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Sustainable procurement: a case study

In this video, we look at how a business in Coventry, Finney’s & Co., implements a policy of sustainable procurement.
My name’s Miriam. I’m the manager of Finney’s Coffee Co in the heart of Coventry. We’re an independent coffee shop and we’ve been here for three and a half years. So, our coffee supplier they have a fantastic relationship with their coffee farms. In the past we have used a different coffee company. Due to economical reasons we decided to go for a company that was a little bit smaller. The main important thing is that it is economically viable for us, and they’re great at training our staff as well to teach them also about where the coffee comes from, how to brew it, how to make it.
We try to keep like a speciality grade level and quality which is what we’ve always had from the very first moment that we opened. So, the company that we’ve got our coffee from also have that strong ethos and so I think that that is what brings our customers in. And then also knowing that it’s sourced from somewhere that’s ethical and sustainable I guess you could call it. I think - we don’t lead with that - but I think that when people ask us we like to know where our coffee comes from and so then we can answer our customers. I think that that also helps us maintain a very strong relationship with our customers as well for sure, definitely.
We’ve started, sort of, using our coffee grounds as well to, in my allotment I use it and we, sort of, give it to other people if they ask. So, it’s just another way of still using the leftovers for something good and, you know, we’ve used products from allotments as well in our menu. So like vegetables fresh and everything they’re all organically grown and no pesticides and things like that. So it kind of goes in full circle I guess you could call it. We’re really good with our waste actually.
We don’t tend to have much because we try and cook accordingly and, yeah, in the past, on the way home, you know, we’ve sort of given what is left over to, you know, people that are out on the streets on the way home and stuff like that. So, we do try and keep our waste down. It’d be great if there was a better incentive for like recycling products for small independent businesses, you know, offering the service to keep that side of things sort of in check with domestic, you know. We know that there’s the problem of a lot plastic in in our oceans and stuff at that. So, we are looking to hopefully start using more sustainable, compostable type products.
So, we’re looking at cups, we’re looking at straws, changing all those sort of things. Again, you know, on the preliminary stages of looking into it and researching it there is a vast difference in price but I think that you can’t put a price on saving the planet can you? So, now we offer people a small discount off their coffee if they bring in their cup and that’s proven to be quite nice for customers and it helps bring them back in again, which is really important as well.

In the following section, we look at sustainable procurement.

This video outlines the concept of sustainable procurement by introducing you to Finney’s & Co., an independent coffee shop in Coventry, UK. The manager, Miriam Majemite, explains how Finney’s & Co. incorporates sustainable procurement into its business practice.

Your task

On the basis of what you have seen, what do you think is meant by the term ‘sustainable procurement’?
What are some of the challenges involved?
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