Seaside-based business helps turn the tide against plastics

RPG, Alex Demetriou

A prominent animal welfare charity has turned to procurement specialists in a bid to turn the tide on single-use plastics which are threatening our oceans and wildlife.

The Zoological Society of East Anglia (ZSEA), which runs several animal conservation projects and attractions, including Banham Zoo and Africa Alive!, was determined to stop using plastic water bottles at its sites.

The ZSEA turned to hospitality and leisure industry procurement experts, the Regency Purchasing Group, based in the South West seaside resort of Weston-super-Mare, for help.

Martin Dupee, ZSEA’s Director of Operations, said: “At both Banham Zoo and Africa Alive!, we have joined with other zoos across the UK to remove all single-use plastic drink bottles from our shelves as part of a campaign to help protect the world’s oceans from the devastating impact of plastic pollution.

“We have even started going beyond this with the removal of all plastic straws, drinking cups and other single-use plastic items from our food outlets, wherever possible.

“With estimates suggesting that by 2025 there will be a tonne of plastic for every three tonnes of fish in our oceans, something has to change and it has to be now. We cannot wait.

“With the support of the Regency Purchasing Group, a partnership which has actively supported our work over a number of years, we have been able to work with our suppliers to radically change the profile of the products we offer our guests. ”

Alex Demetriou, Managing Director of the Regency Purchasing Group, said: “We are getting calls daily from existing members and potential new ones, who are all looking to increase the range of compostable product on their businesses.

“Because of our work with the zoo’s we have been able to formulate solutions over the past two years, so whilst some people are only picking this up now, we have been doing it for years.

“Interestingly, we have also been approached recently by a number of local authorities, who are interested in our work on reducing single use plastics.”