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Plastic Free...or at least getting there!


plastic free champion award

A couple of weeks ago Hiya Pal was given a ‘Plastic Free Champion’ award by our local community organisation, Plastic Free Helensburgh. It’s a great initiative that does exactly what ye’d expect- celebrates and encourages local businesses who are taking steps towards becoming Plastic Free.

Plastic Free Helensburgh logo

Youse all know I bang on frequently about the changes in my business to become more environmentally conscious, but here’s a wee list in case you’ve forgotten or you were just no listening…

  • I use recycled or FSC accredited paper stock for all my cards and marketing materials
  • I use small offcuts of tartan from kilt makers in my handmade card range
  • I use recyclable packaging for posting orders
  • I recently started selling clothing through an eco-friendly printer who make them to order to minimise waste, use eco-friendly inks and have an ethical supply chain
  • I use biodegradable wrappers or sticker seals for cards in shops, and send online orders naked (just tae be clear, I am fully clothed, it’s the cards that are naked…) 
 greeting cards packaged with a recyclable paper seal 

I am always looking for ways tae do things better within the business, but recently I’ve been struggling. There’s one side of me coming up with braw new product ideas that I want to be a success…and then there’s the other side that’s like NAW. Enough stuff. Let’s just calm doon and save the world instead, ken? It’s an internal battle that’s been gaun on for a while, but with the climate change issues getting worse I dinnae feel like I can keep ignoring it.

a pile of cards made from FSC accredited cardstock being held up by a hand with a tattoo that says keep the heid

So, I reckon there’s some changes afoot for Hiya Pal. I’m no sure how it looks yet, but I reckon there may be a bit of a strip back on my ‘wee extras’ like the coasters, keyrings and badges, at least until I can source a more sustainable way of making them.

It takes so much time and effort tae research new ways of doing business, to make changes to processes and suppliers that you’ve used for years and, to be honest, it usually costs more money to do things in an environmentally conscious way. So if you see a small business making that effort, celebrate them! There’s initiatives like Plastic Free Helensburgh all over the country so have a wee look to see what’s set up in your community and get involved.

Cheers pals,

Niki x

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