responsible restaurants

Two of Cardiff’s favourite cafés gain international environmental award

The Green Key programme in Wales goes from strength to strength as two of Cardiff’s favourite foodie hotspots are recognised for operating is a sustainable way.


Penylan Pantry and the Secret Garden café have been recognised for their sustainability efforts and have become the latest businesses in Wales to achieve the Green Key award.

Penylan Pantry is at the heart of the community in Penylan and so much more than an average café. They are also a corner shop and deli that promotes local producers, the community and the environment. They are passionate about the wonderful produce available in Wales and are proud to support their local producers, bakers, makers, farmers and dairies.

The team at the Pantry are also responsible for another of Cardiff’s iconic cafés. Last year they took on a lease to run the Secret Garden Café in Bute Park’s walled garden as well. They operate this establishment in the same responsible way.

Owner Mellissa Boothman says:

As a business owner and employer, it’s my responsibility to run my business as sustainabily as I can for the future of our planet, and the next generation. Receiving a Green Key award is a huge achievement for us all at the Pantry, and we are super super pleased. This award is an acknowledgement that sustainability is at the heart of Penylan Pantry, and to be recognised as a sustainable business means a lot to us. 

She adds:

The future of our natural world is in our hands, sustainable practice needs to become the norm. Businesses can play a vital part in this, they are perfect for setting a good example, leading the way in sustainability, inspiring, sharing ideas and promoting sustainable tips on social media platforms, with customers, and in advertisement 

Businesses throughout the sector in Wales are eligible to apply for Green Key. This includes bed and breakfasts, hotels, self-catering accommodation, camp sites, conference centres, restaurants and attractions.

Nick Ashby, Green Key Coordinator at Keep Wales Tidy says:

We’d like to congratulate Penylan Pantry and the Secret Garden Cafe on their success. We’ve seen mounting concern about the damage that’s being caused to our natural environment, so it’s important to recognise and celebrate Welsh businesses that are taking the lead on sustainability.

An important part of Green Key is education of both customers and staff and it’s great to see the Pantry staff taking this to heart by organising trips to help improve their knowledge of green issues, they recently visited a local recycling centre to better understand how their waste is handled and what they can do to prevent waste going to landfill.

 For more information, visit the Green Key website

Ocean Baskets want to make plastic straws history

Seafood restaurant chain Ocean Basket has launched ‘The Last Straw’ a national campaign in Cyprus.


The pollution of our oceans due to plastic waste has become a major topic in the media and in political discussions. Only recently, the EU banned the use of certain single-use plastic products to help the oceans recover from decades of plastic pollution.

Some businesses, like the Green Key awarded Ocean Baskets in Cyprus, are already one step ahead of the game. Since May 2018, plastic straws have been banned from all nine restaurants on the island. The restaurant chain is the first in Cyprus to launch a campaign against plastic straws. Guests are informed about the campaign though signs on the tables and posters. If a guest does not want to skip the straw, they are offered an eco-friendly alternative upon request.

Ocean Basket’s great initiative to reduce the use of plastic doesn’t stop here. All their restaurants have replaced plastic bottles with glass bottles and the styrofoam takeaway boxes have been replaced by paper boxes. Their ambition is to stop providing anything made out of plastic to their customers.

Furthermore, Ocean Basket participates in several initiatives to raise awareness about marine litter and plastic pollution. In cooperation with the Cypriot organisation running Green Key (CYMEPA) they organise beach cleanups around Cyprus with the involvement of hundreds of young students and their staff members.

In addition, together with CYMEPA, Ocean Basket have designed the “My Responsible Ocean Citizen Little Blue Book” for schools to engage children in the protection of the oceans.