In the February 2021 Forbes article “Sustainability In 2021: Everything Companies Should Know", Rebecca Scheel, Forbes Councils Member, states:
“As the world reopens in the wake of the pandemic, businesses will face a series of choices on whether to go “back to normal” or whether to embrace an uncertain yet promising future. Sustainability drives growth, but only when companies commit to more sustainable practices and establish strategies to guide their sustainability initiatives.
By investing in good people, staying accountable and committing to a mission of sustainability inside and out, businesses in 2021 can push the world toward a better future while strengthening their own positions as market leaders in the bargain.”
Corporate sustainability policies, and indeed even the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, adopted by all United Nations Member States in 2015, are big goals, and big thinking. And why not, we must think big to solve the world’s problems. Companies recognize the need for ambitious targets in many areas. However, on a macro level, corporate sustainability goals can seem distant to you and I.
As we emerge from the global pandemic, and welcome back employees who have been working from home during the pandemic, is there a way to combine corporate sustainability initiatives with employee engagement?
At Aerospring Hydroponics, we have been working with a number of corporates on just that. Our patented hydroponic systems make it possible to grow fresh and nutritious food in the office. This can help companies lower their carbon footprint by producing zero-mileage produce. Employees can simply walk up to our gardens and cut away salads and other leafy greens for their lunch or snack.
What’s more, it allows employees to have that “water cooler” moment in the office again. We have seen groups of workers coalescing around the gardens, as much as social distancing will allow, as a point of interest. These communal areas are giving them a chance to share their experiences while they have been away from the office. And what’s more human than sharing our personal stories around food? Even more so when it is freshly grown lettuce, vegetables and herbs grown on the company premises itself.
We believe that more companies should consider their sustainability programmes closer to home. Ones that can be more meaningful to their employees and engage them on a micro level, while supporting their larger initiatives. There’s a real opportunity for companies to put their money where their mouths are, living the values of employee health and well-being, combined with sustainability. With one garden at a time, we can help in that endeavour.