Lifestyle & Culture

Could London’s Green Vic be the World’s Most Sustainable Pub?

Green Vic’s owner Randy Rampersand has thought about everything... even toilet paper.

10.07.2019 | by Kezia Parkins
Randy Rampersad, founder of The Green Vic
Randy Rampersad, founder of The Green Vic

Everything we buy and consume is connected to businesses making decisions about where the materials for their products are sourced and the packaging they come in. The urgency to save the planet is ramping up in light of recent UN findings stating that only 12 years remain to reduce carbon emissions by 40% before climate change is completely irreversible. 

This means that businesses especially have a responsibility to be more sustainable and make it easier on consumers to produce less waste and lighten their carbon footprint. 

One businessman choosing the planet over profit is Randy Rampersad, owner of The Green Vic pub in Shoreditch, London, which opened last month. He imagined the idea following his graduation from business school and years of travelling and working in hospitality.

“I wanted to create a business that made the world a better place, where people can contribute to charity without changing their normal daily routine, has the capability to expand across the UK, and combined my passion for partying, so a social enterprise pub was the natural fit,” he said.

Rampersad says that a quote from Toast Ale, one of the companies he collaborates with, sums up what he is trying to do perfectly: “If you want to change the world, you have to throw a better party than the ones destroying it.”

The sustainable businessman has passionately and painstakingly thought about absolutely everything—from straws to toilet paper. 

“You’ve got plastic straws, bamboo straws, aluminium straws, edible straws. Pasta straws, which are basically like long penne, and glass straws,” he told The Telegraph.

“Paper straws are rubbish, and the amount of energy used to make one can produce a thousand plastic straws – so what is actually better?” 

In the end, and after much research, he opted for wheat straws.

Rampersad has taken this meticulous approach to source products for every area of The Green Vic — an ode to the East End’s famous pub, The Queen Vic — ensuring that the entire establishment has some ethical or environmental benefit. 

All furniture is pre-loved, the drinks menu has ties to over 40 different charities, and the pub employs the homeless and those with disabilities. 

Here are just a few ethical/sustainable brands and charities that can be found at the Green Vic:

  • Toast Ale — a brand that brews beer from surplus bread
  • Brewgooder — a brand that donates all its money to clean water projects in Africa
  • Ginerosity  — a social enterprise that makes gin and uses profits to fund projects that help train and mentor the homeless
  • Bumble Beer — brewers that are helping to save the bees
  • Forty Hall — wine from London’s only vineyard made by individuals suffering from mental health issues
  • Who Gives a Crap? — a sustainably packaged toilet paper company that uses profits to build toilets in the developing world
  • Unity Kitchen — a company that trains people with disabilities to start a career in hospitality
  • Change Please — an organisation that trains the homeless to become baristas
  • Vegan Accountants — yep, even the pub’s money handlers have an ethical business model. This accounting company gives money back to animal welfare charities and only works with ethical companies

 

All the pub grub served at The Green Vic is 100 percent plant-based and cooked up by The Green Grill. Burgers and the usual pub fare are still to be found, just vegan.

 

 

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Benevolence & burgers ??⁠ ⁠ Name us a more iconic duo… we’ll wait.⁠ ⁠ Come down tonight for a bite as part of our ? Feed The Homeless ? night, where you can drink, eat and be merry knowing that all of your profit will go towards feeding vulnerable people on a table near you. ⁠ ⁠ Every Monday ? we’re working in collaboration with the wonderful people at @crisis_uk on this event, to give back to those that need it most.⁠ ⁠ We’ve got the wicked @thegreengrill bringing that plant-based junk to our kitchen with their signature burgers, hot dawgs, fried chkn and stacked chips.⁠ See you later!⁠ .⠀⁠ .⠀⁠ .⠀⁠ .⠀⁠ .⠀⁠ .⠀⁠ #ethical #ethicalbusiness #shoreditch #charitablecause #greenenergy #enviornmentalist #ecofriendly #makingadifference #doinggood #ethicalmovement #savetheplanet #asipintherightdirection #worldsmostethicalpub #thebetterworld #ethicalconsumer #consciousconsumer #gogreen #ecofriendlyliving #popuplondon #veganbusiness #veganeeeats #vegano #plantbased #pub #londonfoodie #wheretolondon #pubculture #britishpub #localpub #bestpubguide⠀

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All of these details could well add up to The Green Vic being the most ethical and sustainable pub in the world, but only time will tell if the pub can sustain itself and stay open. The pub’s prices are in-keeping with other boozers in the area, and being ethical doesn’t come cheap. Neither does running a pub. 

However, The Green Vic is open for a three-month residency, just in time for summer — the Brits’ most active boozing months. 

Finding investors is key to the pub’s future. Rampersad’s decision to launch the pub now could be the opportune moment, as the ethical investment sector is seriously hotting up.

“I want to get people to contribute without changing their normal daily routine, that’s the key,” says Rampersad. 

“We Brits love going down the pub, so it’s a bit of a no-brainer really, which is why I was so amazed no one’s done it before. I want people to come because it’s a good pub – the other stuff is a bonus.”

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