How to make barbecues more sustainable
Because we want to offer a range of sustainable choices for the perfect summer activities as well, Colruyt and OKay have a number of alternatives that can make lighting your barbecue more sustainable. Choose briquettes made from waste material from other production processes, or charcoal that uses sustainable harvested wood with an FSC label.
Sustainably harvested wood with an FSC label
In our assortment, you'll find Boni Selection charcoal that comes from sustainably harvested wood which is clearly identified by the FSC label on the packaging. This means we can guarantee that there is no illegal wood in our charcoal, and that the wood has been harvested sustainably and with respect for local ecosystems. Everyday charcoal will be certified from 2019.
The FSC-certified wood that is used for the Boni Selection charcoal comes from the mellifera, a native acacia tree from Namibia in South Africa. The tree sucks up huge quantities of water, which stops other shrubs from growing. The result is desertification and significant consequences for local ecosystems, so sustainable harvesting of the mellifera has a positive effect on the surrounding area.
New destination for waste material
An awful lot of production processes create waste material, but that isn’t necessarily destined for the waste bin. We can recover and use this material, in this case, to make more sustainable barbecue fuel. That increases the range of alternatives we offer and reduces the waste mountain.
Let’s look at the Boni Selection cotton briquettes from China, made from the spent branches of the cotton plant, which need to be pruned anyway after harvesting is over. In the past, the cuttings would simply have been burned on the field; now our producer buys them to burn in industrial ovens, which limits the soot emissions. These briquettes also have a social impact, because the cotton farmers earn additional income from selling the branches they have pruned.
The coconut briquettes from Indonesia are made from another kind of waste material – the shells of coconuts, creating a valuable use for this by-product of other products (such as coconut milk). Coconut briquettes burn for a long time, so you don’t need very many of them.
We also take the social aspect into consideration, alongside the sustainable audits, so we carry out social audits on all our producers of charcoal and briquettes. This allows us to check whether the working conditions meet our requirements, and we work with our suppliers on an ongoing basis to improve the working conditions in their factories.
With this initiative, we contribute to the following Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations.