These days, when you open a newspaper, turn on the TV or check social media you are likely to spot a mention of “sustainability” before long. Whatever the topic, be it politics, fashion, food, transport, agriculture or relationships, “sustainability” seems to be the latest buzzword thrown around at every opportunity. As the use of the word becomes more frequent, its importance is in danger of being diluted. Are we losing our grasp on what sustainability really means?
Sustainability is defined by the World Wildlife Fund for Nature (WWF) as an economic activity that meets the needs of the present generation without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs. But today, it has a more pressing and time-sensitive meaning; that of reducing our collective harm on the environment and ultimately reversing the damage we have already caused.
Sustainability means we are all responsible for our planet, and we must all take action. How we take action is where our personal understanding of the word is really put to the test. Our modern life is full of convenience: water, electricity, fuel, clothing and food are all readily available and require very little thought to obtain. But if we took a little time to consider the environmental implications of each, perhaps we wouldn’t be so quick to waste them.
At Daylesford, we believe sustainability is the most important, significant word to describe the type of farming we believe will safeguard our food security. We are passionate about ensuring that what we rear, grow and take from the land does not exceed what we give back. Daylesford founder Carole Bamford often quotes, “the earth is not a gift from our parents, we are only borrowing it from our children”. This message encapsulates the essence of sustainable farming in perfectly simple terms.
Recently at the UN Climate Talks in Poland, Sir David Attenborough called for urgent action to reduce climate change, which he describes as the “biggest threat to this planet in thousands of years”. Government and big businesses have the biggest influence to effect dramatic change, but we all have a part to play. So what does sustainability mean on a personal level?
As consumers, we have immense power that should not be underestimated. We are all responsible for our planet and taking action as individuals can really make a difference, whether it’s reducing your household waste and energy usage or choosing to spend your money with ethical shops and businesses. It can require more care, thought and effort to seek out sustainable solutions but ultimately, sustainability means we all take action. We all have a part to play, however small. And by setting an example, we empower others to do the same. So what does sustainability mean to you?
Over the coming weeks, Daylesford will be revisiting the sustainability goals we set out in January 2018 in order to update this blog with our progress and where we continue to make improvements.