Bright Green Enterprise

Waste not, want not

Over the past two weeks we’ve been working with students undertaking our Green Dragons enterprise and innovation challenge. Starting off in London and moving on to Oxford, we’ve been delighted to see some fantastic examples of creative thinking and problem solving come out of the workshops. Each team used their imagination and entrepreneurial acumen to produce innovative solutions to pressing global concerns. 

The winning team from Godolphin and Latymer school was ‘UnEarthed‘ – an ethical social enterprise which partners with food suppliers to sell unwanted ‘ugly’ fruit and vegetables in urban markets and schools, encouraging people to buy and eat healthy foods that would otherwise go to waste.

Unbeknownst to us whilst this was all going on, businesses and governments were also tackling the same issue…

In the UK, Tesco supermarket has just announced plans to eliminate 100% of its food waste by giving it to appropriate charities in the UK to use and consume.

Meanwhile in Italy, the government has just announced it will be rolling out a law to make ALL supermarkets give unwanted food to the needy! Following an earlier lead taken by France.

Our education partner ThoughtBox was also covering waste within its January curriculum, providing resources for students to explore and critically question the causes and effects of waste across our planet.

And if that wasn’t enough, we were delighted to watch the first clip of the upcoming film to The Plastic Project by our friend Tim Nunn Photography. Tim’s adventures into surf, photography and the crusade to fight and reduce plastics in our oceans was highlighted last September by BGE when we went to hear his fascinating talk at Jimmy’s Iced Coffee.

Watch The Plastic Project introduction here: 

Whilst The Plastic Project is an exemplary example of individual and collective action, we want our students to think critically about the causes of waste – especially in the production and packaging of products. After all, if it wasn’t for businesses selling us things in plastic, we wouldn’t have quite the problem we do in the 21st century.

It’s only by unpacking the packaging crisis can we get to see and then understand where the problems occur and begin putting business back together in a more ethical way.

Green Dragons helps students to:

1. Acknowledge the problems associated with unethical and unsustainable business practice.

2. Accept that there’s an individual responsibility to reducing waste (food and plastic) and that collectively, the best solutions can be found to correcting this.

3. Act to change the direction of business impact by exploring how skills in design, technology and communication (such as marketing, advertising, PR, public speaking…) can all help to shape a more sustainable planet.

We’re looking forward to working with lots more students this summer and seeing if any more governments and businesses take steps to address these critical issues!

(Credit to Tim Nunn Photography for the featured image).

 

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