Saturday, September 24, 2022

Local coffee legends make huge strides in sustainability

120-year-old family firm, Stokes Tea & Coffee are well known for their top-notch coffee – now they’re also becoming quite the pioneers in eco-friendly innovations.

In its latest developments, the company is installing a cutting-edge heating system that will not only cut carbon emissions by more than a third but enable the company to reduce energy usage and harness solar power too.

The new system is being installed at Stokes’ HQ (where its roastery is also based), at the Lawn Building, a 19th Centuryformer asylum on Union Road in Lincoln. The company moved operations here in 2017 following an extensive £2million refurbishment and restoration project which took two years to complete.

Andy Jackson, project manager at Stokes Tea & Coffee, explained: “We like to make things last at Stokes, but, after 43 years of service from our heating boilers, it was time for an overhaul. Historical buildings are notoriously difficult to heat and we were determined to find a system that would rise to the challenges on both efficiency and emissions.

“We’re pleased to see the installation of our new Viessmann boilers which are so efficient we only need two instead of the previous three and each boiler is 30% more efficient which means even less energy usage and emissions. It’s clever too as it has weather compensation equipment installed which monitors changing external temperatures and automatically adjusts output. This information can be collected, and adjustments made remotely to improve efficiency and we won’t even know it’s been done.

“The new system can be set up to heat specific zones or rooms rather than the whole building, and it’s also capable of collecting and using solar energy to heat water – so the scope for further savings on emissions and wastage is huge!

“We are striving to make our Grade II* listed Lawn Building into an eco-showcase location to help share knowledge and experience in waste and emission reduction with anyone who has the challenges of owning or occupying historical buildings like ours.”

Stokes Tea & Coffee may have a long history, but this certainly isn’t holding them back when it comes to leading on cutting edge innovation, and the team remains unshakeable in its focus on achieving ambitious sustainability targets.

Other sustainable actions taken by the firm include:

  • The Zero Waste scheme which is designed to cut down on packaging waste by delivering coffee and tea to Stokes’ wholesale customers in reusable buckets that keep products perfectly fresh and in peak condition, saving the use of thousands of boxes and packets
  • Reducing road miles through smart logistics, remote problem-solving and a help desk for customers, and sourcing local produce for Stokes’ cafés
  • Investing in recyclable packaging and re-purposing/upcycling materials
  • Supporting the free top-up refill water scheme
  • Planting trees in the UK and overseas
  • Reducing emissions with one of the most eco-friendly coffee roasters to cut the use of natural gas and reduce CO2 emissions
  • Using smart lighting in Stokes’ buildings
  • Introducing a cycle-to-work scheme

There’s a lot going on and it’s clear that talk about saving the planet is much more than hot air at Stokes Tea & Coffee!

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