Korean Bites; our first-ever carbon neutral snack

Posted · 3rd November 2021
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Who’s ready to bring a bit of East Asian spice to your plant-based home-cooking?

We’re very excited to launch our brand new vegan Korean Bites into Tesco from the 8th of November. The new plant-based Korean snack is packed full of colourful veggies, including carrots, sweet potatoes, onion, kale, chargrilled peppers, and generously seasoned with classic Asian spices, to bring a kick of Korea to your plate. Not only that, but it’s also a great source of both protein and fibre!

The new flavourful snack is bringing more than just spice; it’s the first-ever Cauldron product that’s carbon neutral and we’re over the moon! This is just the beginning for us – watch this space for more news over the coming months.

Going carbon neutral

Let’s get into the whys, whens and whos! First of all, we’re passionate about creating delicious plant-based food that’s both better for us and better for our planet. Now, we’re making it EVEN better.

Our unique planet needs protecting – for us, for our ecosystem and for future generations. Knowing that humans are rapidly damaging the earth is an extremely tough pill to swallow, and we simply can’t sit back and watch that happen.

We’ve already taken great steps to reduce the footprint of our products; and now we’re excited to announce that we’re going EVEN further, by launching the first Cauldron product that’s carbon neutral. We knew it was time for our thoughts to be put into action to ensure the planet remains the beautiful, thriving place that it is and, by making our first carbon-neutral product, we’re taking even more steps to protect the world we live in.

This is just the start of our dedicated journey and our commitment to make a difference, one tasty plant-based meal at a time.

How are we doing it?

We’ve teamed up with ClimatePartner to offset the greenhouse gas emissions (from now on referred to as CO2 emissions) created from making our new Korean Bites. We’re supporting four projects to do this:

Carbon Neutrality Project 1

Providing clean, safe and green cooking equipment for families in Nigeria

This project helps to provide clean cooking equipment in Nigeria. With over 71 per cent of the population cooking on inefficient cookers, this project enables the production of stoves with a ceramic lining that can better absorb and store heat.

More information

Carbon Neutrality Project 2

Protecting land for smallholders in Brazil instead of it being used for soy plantations

In the Amazon region, the land is suited for soy plantations, making it an easy target. The Brazilian land law makes it possible to deforest and appropriate ‘unused land’ and, unfortunately, nature conservation projects fall into the ‘unused land’ territory.
This project is to help preserve the rainforest and acquire property rights that mean the land is no longer classified as ‘unused’.

More information

Carbon Neutrality Project 3

Woodland creation in the UK

European land is home to lots of precious woodland areas. Unfortunately, these ecosystems have been affected by climate change. The Woodland Carbon Code Projects are aimed at restoring damaged land and making it into a habitat that benefits local wildlife and society.

More information

Carbon Neutrality Project 4

Afforestation to support deforestation-free products in Nicaragua

This project in Nicaragua has planted over 1 million plants of native bamboo and protected 1,000 hectares of old forest to be used as a conservation zone. Bamboo is one of the most efficient biological tools for fighting climate change. The fibres from the plant help form a base for sustainable, deforestation-free products.

More information

What is the carbon footprint of Korean Bites?

The current footprint of Cauldron Korean Bites is 2.88 kgCO2e/kg of product. We have calculated and offset all emissions on a cradle-to-customer, plus end-of-life basis.

This means that the calculation includes all emissions related to its ingredients, packaging, energy use (to make the product), transportation (upstream and downstream) and waste treatment (e.g. recycling, incineration, landfill).

We don’t currently offset the ‘usage’ phase which relates to the storage and cooking linked emissions of the products as we want to encourage our customers to take action to reduce this first!

If budgets allow, by ensuring you use efficient appliances, procure renewable energy and transition from gas hobs to electric/induction hobs you can have a massive impact on these emissions and bring them as close as possible to zero.

What does this mean for you?

Cauldron Korean Bites

Carbon-neutral products still have a carbon footprint (as does making any product), but purchasing them supports projects across the globe that bring immediate climate action to benefit both the environment and social development. As such, by eating/buying carbon-neutral products instead of those which do not support these projects, you can enjoy delicious food that’s better for you and better for the planet, too.

We all have personal goals and reduction strategies, but by eating/buying carbon-neutral products, you can enjoy delicious food that’s better for you and better for the planet, too.

Want to know more?

We don’t blame you! Have a gander at the below Q&A’s, and feel free to drop us a message – we’re always happy to chat about mouth-watering food and how we can help save our planet!

What does carbon neutral mean?

A carbon neutral business, product, or service can be achieved when the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (CO2e) emitted are calculated, reduced and offset by supporting verified carbon offset projects. Carbon offset projects make a decisive contribution to combating global warming by demonstrably avoiding greenhouse gases from entering the atmosphere, reducing or removing them from it. These projects can take the form of forest conservation, reforestation, or the development of renewable energy.

What does carbon offsetting mean?

A carbon offset broadly refers to a reduction in GHG emissions – or an increase in carbon storage (e.g. through land restoration or the planting of trees) – that is used to compensate for emissions that unavoidably occur elsewhere. Carbon offsets avoid, reduce, or remove carbon from the atmosphere and are certified to international standards (e.g. Gold Standard, VCS).

Why is carbon offsetting needed?

The Paris Agreement’s central aim is to strengthen the global response to the threat of climate change by limiting the temperature increase even further to 1.5°C. Some estimates show that we are on track to exceed this in less than 8 years, meaning that alongside aggressive reduction targets, more is needed to help others reduce their emissions and we are very likely to require carbon removal (e.g. planting trees or direct air capture) to return back to 1.5°C if we overshoot it. The IPCC states that: ‘If global temperature temporarily overshoots 1.5°C, Carbon Dioxide Removal (CDR) would be required to reduce the atmospheric concentration of CO2 to bring the global temperature back down.’This means that investing in offsetting projects with verified impact is an important complement to investing in reducing our own footprint. The benefits of offsetting projects can be explained as follows:

  1. Offset means immediate actions: Activities take place now and this is an important topic for the global climate targets to be achieved by 2030 and 2050.
  2. Verified climate impact: Methodologies, in-person monitoring reports, and technology tools (e.g. satellite imagery) allow a continuous follow-up of the projects to ensure environmental and social integrity.
  3. Sustainable development: Offset projects are always supporting more than environmental improvements and often contribute to a variety of Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Why focus on offsetting instead of reduction?

These two actions aren’t mutually exclusive and we are tackling both. We have focused on reducing our footprint for more than a decade: In 2020, we reduced our energy use per tonne of product by 61%, and we reduced the emissions from our own factory (Scope 1 and 2) per tonne of product by 93% in comparison to 2012 baseline. We have achieved this by switching to renewable electricity and implementing energy-saving projects, and by choosing manufacturing partners aligned to our sustainability values we can be assured that all our products are being made in a way that is reducing the impact on climate change. But we are not stopping here. We have set our ambition to be Net Zero in our own operations by 2030 which means we’re working to reduce our carbon footprint whilst offsetting it in the meantime.
Implementing reduction strategies can however take considerable amounts of time as it depends on engaging with our various actors in our supply chain and requires innovation and cross-industry collaboration. Agriculture is also a hard-to-decarbonise sector, meaning there may always be emissions that cannot be reduced to zero, such as from some of the farming inputs required to grow our ingredients. By investing in offsetting whilst rolling out reduction measures, we are certain we are doing something immediate to tackle this climate emergency.

Isn’t offsetting just a way for people to “buy” themselves a good conscience instead of trying to reduce their footprints?

This is only true if you do nothing about your carbon footprint. By purchasing goods that are carbon neutral, you can be sure that this business is taking climate action and putting themselves in the limelight for scrutiny on their reduction strategies. Offsetting enables immediate climate action that benefits not only the environment but social development too in most cases.

Why support projects overseas instead of those close to home?

Climate change is a global issue whose impact spreads throughout the world. Countries in the global south have been hit hard with natural disasters, poverty, and deforestation which means overseas carbon offset projects can have an even bigger environmental and social impact. Supporting these projects allows us to fight climate change globally.

How do you know that the offset projects that you support deliver actual impact?

All projects offered by ClimatePartner are verified to recognised standards (VCS, Woodland Carbon Code and Gold Standard) by third-party auditors on a regular basis. This ensures that the CO2 savings have indeed occurred as well as the social impact metrics that are tracked.

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