A sustainable way of life for Irons and Craig

8th September 2017 5:00 AM
CAFE: David Barnier and Antony Perring with Granny Weatherwax in their garden at Irons and Craig, Yamba. CAFE: David Barnier and Antony Perring with Granny Weatherwax in their garden at Irons and Craig, Yamba. Clair Morton

SUSTAINABILITY is not a special thing Irons and Craig do, it's just a part of the way they operate.

And it's that mentality that has seen the Yamba cafe rewarded for its commitment to environmental sustainability at Clarence Valley Council's recent Living Sustainably Awards.

Antony Perring said Irons and Craig were so committed to sustainability they redesigned their menu around what they could grow themselves and source locally.

"Sustainability is not just for sourcing local and the environmental aspect, it's also with economic sustainability and the susceptibility of the community,” he said.

Where the cafe is, in an old house on Coldstream St, Mr Perring said the cafe had more options for growing its own produce because of the space behind the cafe.

"Part of the sustainability of this business is having everything at our disposal on site, where we can,” he said.

"We're really lucky we have the venue to do that... I wish other businesses could do things on their own little patch (as well).”

It's not just growing their own produce and sourcing local ingredients that highlighted Iron and Craig's sustainability.

"We self-nominated, we heard about the awards through the chamber of commerce, and when we went through the process of filling out the forms, we surprised ourself about how much we were doing,” Mr Perring said.

"Installing the jugular mild system... it's saved us about 40% of our plastic waste, there is shipping and food mile savings as well.

"We're even reusing our coffee grounds and have chooks in the back garden... not all businesses can do that.”

Irons and Craig has also been apart of a successful village garden project at Caroona Aged Care.

Alongside Irons and Craig, Yamba Landcare, Dundurrabin Public School and John and Pat Edwards took out major honours at the awards.

Yamba Landcare has been in operation for more than 20 years and has had great success in removing exotic plants and noxious weeds from the Clarence estuary. They recently managed a $100,000 grant from the Environmental Trust to restore endangered ecological communities in the Clarence Estuary Nature Reserve.