Caring for the Environment
At DukesHill we want to ensure that our impact on society and the environment is a positive one. We believe in producing wonderful food, but we also believe that we should produce it in a manner that doesn’t cost the earth.
As far as our meat is concerned, we work closely with British farmers who share our commitment to sustainable and ethical farming.
We also care about the other things, which can all make a big difference: we have built our production kitchens to be as energy efficient as possible; we recycle waste wherever possible; we use recyclable packaging; we minimise paperwork.
See our Sustainability Commitments below to discover more.
To source meat and other ingredients which have been sustainably and ethically farmed or produced.
We take animal welfare very seriously. We believe that the meat we use should be ethically and humanely produced and killed and that the best hams come from happy pigs. We work with several great suppliers who we believe share our commitment to responsible and sustainable farming. DukesHill has grown considerably over the years; we are still very much a “small family business”, but we have grown beyond the point where we can work with just one supplier. We are predominately a ham producer and whilst we have added other products like bacon and sausages to our portfolio, we still use a lot more “back legs” than we do the rest of the pig.
This means that we are not the ideal customer for farms who are in the business of selling whole animals. That said, we do work closely with farms, and visit them regularly to verify that our welfare standards are met. Much of the meat we use comes from a local farm who produce excellent meat, 100% Free Range, to excellent welfare standards. However, we also buy from local slaughterhouses and cutting plants, but again we only specify the highest standards available. The only unequivocal line in the sand that we specify is that all our pork is sourced from RSPCA Assured farms.
We take the sourcing of all our other meats just as seriously. For instance, our poultry is all produced to the highest levels of free-range standards and our award-winning West Country Beef carries the PGI mark of excellence - there is never an excuse for distressing, intensive or inhumane farming methods that cause animals to suffer.
To minimise the environmental impact of our food packaging by reducing the amount used, using recyclable materials, and working with suppliers to find “green” solutions to our packaging needs.
Delivering food by mail order requires a strategy that enables us to deliver chilled food safely in packaging that is adequately insulated to keep it cool and sufficiently robust to protect our customers’ orders (which may contain fragile items as well as whole joints of meat) from damage in transit.
There is more work to be done to ensure our delivery box packaging is 100% recyclable.
Packaging Recycling Guide
Branded Cardboard Box
Our cardboard delivery boxes are made from FSC-certified material and are 100% recyclable. Once you have opened your box it can be recycled.
Foil liner bag
Our insulated foil liner bags are fully recyclable. These can be recycled at selected supermarkets or local recycling centres.
Our ice packs can be recycled. Simply allow them to defrost and pour the liquid down the sink. The plastic can then be recycled (depending on local recycling) or taken to soft plastics recycling outlets.
To minimise the environmental impact of our marketing and promotional material.
As a mail order company, our customers need us to keep in touch with them by sending our catalogues in the post; we minimise the effect of this by keeping the catalogues as small as possible, and carefully selecting the customers that receive them to avoid wastage.
At the same time, we do all that we can to encourage customers to use our website to browse our product range and place their orders.
We ensure that the paper we use is fully accredited by FSC as coming from sustainable sources. All our mailings are recyclable and have the recyclable logo printed on them to encourage careful disposal.
To reduce the cost of Energy, Distribution, Waste and Water by evaluating operations and ensuring that they are as efficient as possible.
We work hard to save energy in all our processes. This includes working closely with our plant suppliers to ensure that the plant used for cooking and cooling is as efficient as possible. We have identified and implemented a new method of running our ham cookers to save on electrical consumption. We have also implemented new cooling regimes that have dramatically reduced water usage in the cooling of our hams.
Throughout the offices, we use energy-efficient lighting and computer monitors and ensure that all staff are using the energy-saving features of IT and other office equipment correctly.
We do all that we can to minimize the effects of waste, both by eliminating it where possible, and encouraging recycling where it is inevitable. We scrupulously segregate the large amount of cardboard that we receive to ensure that it can be taken away for recycling. We have listened carefully to our customers’ requests to offer some of our products in smaller portion sizes to there is less risk of the food being wasted once the customer receives it.
To engage with our Employees, Suppliers and Customers; to support and incentivise them to adopt behaviour that has a positive impact on the environment.
We have high regard for the environment in every aspect of the business. For handwashing, staff in the production department use knee-operated sinks which only deliver water when needed and cannot be left running and we use hand driers where practical to minimize paper towel waste. We operate a Cycle to Work Scheme which has been taken up by 35% of staff.