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Paraoa Bakehouse judged NZ's Sustainable Biz Of 08

Paraoa Bakehouse judged New Zealand’s Sustainable Business of the Year

Paraoa Bakehouse is today celebrating after being awarded New Zealand’s Sustainable Business of the Year award at the 2008 NZI National Sustainable Business Network Awards last night.

The awards, held at Auckland’s War Memorial Museum, recognise those businesses that are actively integrating principles of sustainability into their daily business operations.

Resene Paints, YHA Wellington, Express Couriers, Kate Sylvester and Meridian Energy, were also winners in their individual award categories.

In addition to winning the Sustainable Business of the Year title, Paraoa Bakehouse also scooped up the top prize in the Trailblazer (Small and Medium) category.

Paraoa Bakehouse produces a range of breads including gluten-free and wheat-free varieties that are sold throughout New Zealand.

The Judges were particularly impressed by the company’s commitment to waste minimisation. While producing 5,000 loaves of bread a week, the business has drastically reduced the amount of weekly rubbish it sends to landfill to less than the size of a netball.

Paraoa Bakehouse is certified organic and sources ingredients from sustainable organic farming producers around the country.

It recycles plastic, cardboard and paper, and unsold bread is donated to the Foodbank, used for stuffing, turned into breadcrumbs or croutons or used as animal feed; and the company is also trying to source their energy from renewable resources.

Rachel Brown, Chief Executive of the Sustainable Business Network is impressed with the company’s efforts to minimise and mitigate the impact of their business activities.

“Paraoa Bakehouse provides us with a restorative sustainable business model – and its owner, Robert Glensor, is a visionary entrepreneur and a sustainability role model for the rest of us.

“These products have a positive impact on the health of the consumer and the health of the environment - the bulk of the waste from their operations becomes nutrient for animals or for the soil, which means the more the business grows, the healthier we, collectively, become.”

As foundation partner of the Sustainable Business Network and awards sponsor, Head of NZI Karl Armstrong said he is delighted that businesses are increasingly becoming aware of the need to become more sustainable.

“It’s great to see the innovative solutions last night’s winners have found to allow them to integrate sustainable practices across their businesses.

“We are very proud to support the efforts of other companies making real change to the way they do business.”

To enter the awards, businesses either participated in the Sustainable Business Network’s ‘Get Sustainable Challenge’ that looks at key areas of sustainable practice and whether they are being embedded throughout the organisation; or entered the Sustainable Design and Innovation Award, which celebrates businesses offering an outstanding product, service or building.


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