Coffee Is Social™

What it means to be a Zero Hero

• By lisapratt • Sustainability

In honour of our Best for the World Challenge, we’re taking a closer look at all the ways that Salt Spring Coffee strives to make a difference when it comes to sustainability. This week, what it means to be a Zero Hero.

Zero Hero Program

What is a Zero Hero?

A Zero Hero is a business or organization that’s taking steps to reduce its landfill waste—and the associated greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions—with the ultimate goal of achieving zero waste.

What is the Zero Hero program?

In October 2012, Salt Spring Coffee teamed up with the folks at LOCO BC to launch the Zero Hero program in Vancouver, BC. At the time, Metro Vancouver was looking to ban organic materials (food scraps) from landfills by 2015, and increase average business waste diversion from 38% to more than 70% (Recycling and Solid Waste Management Report, Metro Vancouver, 2012).

The Zero Hero program offers businesses—particularly restaurants, food retailers and food service companies—the tools, resources and support they need to:

  • Establish effective waste management programs—whether that means implementing new practices, like composting or recycling, or optimizing existing ones.
  • Engage employees, suppliers and customers in waste management.
  • Verify waste diversion success for legislation compliance and sustainable business certifications like B Corp.

Edible Canada, Momento Coffee House, Thirst First Office Coffee & Vending, University Golf Course, Uprising Breads Bakery and W2 Café were among the first local businesses to participate in the Zero Hero pilot program.

How are we doing?

Since the Zero Hero program launched, Salt Spring Coffee has been steadily reducing landfill waste. Between 2012 and 2015, we increased our waste diversion from 89%—which was already well above the industry average—to 95% through recycling, composting and donations. It’s an achievement we’re both proud of and always looking to improve.

Best for the WorldWhat can you do?

You don’t have to be a Zero Hero to make a difference. If you haven’t yet joined Salt Spring Coffee’s Best for the World Challenge, there’s still time. Say no to disposable cups for 21 days for a chance to win a year’s supply of Salt Spring Coffee and six handcrafted mugs.

Take our Best for the World Challenge


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