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Carbon Neutral. We've all heard it, but what does it really mean?

There’s no denying that 2020 was a year that challenged us to look at things from a different perspective. We focused MORE on supporting local businesses, MORE on our own health and wellbeing and of course MORE on our planet. 2020 was the year Dinner Twist decided to make the switch and go Carbon Neutral.
Let’s take it back to basics and talk about what that really means! If we’re being honest, becoming “Carbon Neutral” was something that we didn’t really know the full extent of when we decided to make the change. Did it mean changing any habits or processes? Did it mean going out into nature and hugging a tree {ok, we might be kidding about that one!} We took the time to research and educate ourselves and the rest of our team to utilise this change in every positive way possible!

So, what exactly is Carbon Neutral?
“Carbon neutrality” means that you have reduced your climate impact to net zero. As it is almost impossible to avoid the creation of greenhouse gases (GHG) emissions entirely, Dinner Twist needed to balance these unavoidable emissions through the purchase of carbon offsets. What is a carbon offset, you may ask? To “offset” our carbon usage means that we pay for the planting of diverse native vegetaition, which will in turn sequester the amount of CO2 we put out into the atmosphere. Our offsets were purchased through Carbon Neutral and will be invested back into two separate programs. These programs, which will begin the plantation process, are located both here in Western Australia and Brazil.
How did you become Carbon Neutral?
The process of becoming Carbon Neutral involved looking into all areas of our business to measure our footprint, including outgoing freight, packaging material use, waste, printing & office paper, water use & disposal and fuel & electricity indirect emissions. We also sent out an internal survey to all staff, including questions relating to travel {no stone was left unturned here!} Based on this research and the answers from our staff members, the total tonnes of GHG emissions were calculated and then compensated for by purchasing carbon offsets so that the net emissions of Dinner Twist’s activities are zero.
Is it just a trend then? Why is it so important to become Carbon Neutral?
We believe that becoming Carbon Neutral should not be a trend. It shouldn’t be optional. This should be a necessity for the future of our planet. We are currently seeing leading brands making pledges to become Carbon Neutral, however, the size of these companies means that this is unfortunately not a quick fix. This is something that will take YEARS to offset. Apple has pledged to become Carbon Neutral by 2030. Amazon? 2040. BP? 2050. While Dinner Twist is nowhere near the size of any of these corporations, it is a lesson to us and any future brands that we should be starting this from day one.
What does this mean for me as a Dinner Twist customer?
To put it simply, supporting Carbon Neutral businesses means that you are helping reduce your own personal carbon footprint. Perth based charity, Carbon Positive, has been assisting us with ways we can better educate and engage households to understand and act on their carbon emissions. They recently launched their very own carbon calculator! If you are curious to work out your own household carbon footprint, click HERE.

(Image: Dinner Twist Canning Vale Warehouse with EGP Energy Solar Panels installed)

What are the plans for the future?
Our goal is to offer Australians ethically sourced food from a carbon positive platform. There are so many steps we have taken to bring us closer to Carbon Neutrality, such as installing a solar power system on the roof of our warehouse in December 2019, introducing the Dinner Twist Marketplace to help our customers reduce their weekly trips to the shops and in-turn reduce their time spent on the roads and using a “circular economy” system with our boxes, however, there’s always more that can be done. We are by no means perfect, but we will continuously strive to improve our processes. “We’ll do what we can today, but tomorrow we’ll do more.” - Co-Owner, Christoffer Tistrand

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