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How We Work at Sullivans

Our Ethos & Sustainable Producers

We strive to offer the most sustainable products available. But, what does sustainability mean?

The overriding definition was given by the Norwegian prime minister, Gro Harlem Brundtland, many years ago –

‘Sustainable development is development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to measure their own needs.’

When using the term here in Sullivan’s, we think of the three sustainable pillars;

PEOPLE – fair treatment of all and giving back to the community one is part of
PLANET – careful use of the Earth’s natural resources (water, soil, trees), and conservation of our natural habitats and wildlife
PROFIT – a viable, sound business that shares its profit for the greater good

We hope to make it easier for our customers to live sustainably by offering locally sourced produce, loose fruit and veg in reusable packaging and refillable options.

We love to source real, handmade and natural food products from small producers and our home accessories also follow our same sustainable ethos. We work with local craftsmen offering handmade functional accessories; our natural rugs are GoodWeave certified and the handmade leather bags support small community businesses in South Africa.

Redrhino is our not-for-profit arm, which was founded by Elizabeth whilst living in South Africa. All profits from the sale of our Redrhino scarves support life-changing environmental education at the Lapalala Wilderness School in Limpopo.

Our coffee cups, lids, ‘plastic’ salad tubs and cutlery are all made from plant material and are 100% compostable – so what does this mean?

Compostable vs Biodegradable

Biodegradable products will break down but the time it will take is unspecified; certain plastic bottles can be termed biodegradable even if it will take 1000 years for them to fully break down.

For a product to be compostable, it must break into nutrient-rich soil within 6 months when commercially composted; in organic matter, it should break down between 8 to 12 weeks.

Compostable packaging does not need to be washed before going into the brown bin.

When home composting our compostable packaging, your compost will need to be well circulated and reach 65 degrees in the centre in order to break down in the above time frames. If not, it will still break down but take longer. Cutting up the plastic tubs will speed up the process.

We also strive to not waste food here at Sullivan’s… what cannot be cooked in our kitchen, is fed to local hens and donkeys.

Meet Some of Our Sustainable Producers

FIXX Coffe at Sullivans

FIXX Coffee

We serve the wonderful FiXX CLASSIC to go: A multiple Great Taste Award winning blend of Sumatran, Ethiopian and Brazilian beans. A cup of real distinction, balancing smooth creamy notes with a gently spiced finish.

Fixx Coffee is synonymous with super service & efficiency, headed by Anne Abberton. Originally from Co. Galway, Anne’s company is based in Dublin where they roast and package all their coffee. They use 100% Arabica beans and partner with green bean suppliers whose values align with their own; positive social and environmental practices feature strongly for them throughout their products.

picture: Anne Abberton on one of the coffee plantations in Brazil.

Real Olive Company

The Real Olive Company

The Real Olive company has been a cornerstone market stall all over Ireland for more than 20 years. Based in Cork, they offer a range of products, including the best of olives and oils directly from small, sustainable producers in France, Spain and Greece.

In the Toons Bridge Dairy they make Mediterranean-inspired cheeses and their super hummus and pesto are ever so popular in our shop.

Uncle Matts Farm

Uncle Matt’s Farm

Uncle Matt’s Farm is our very own local organic vegetable supplier – all grown on a beautiful farm just down the road. Padhraig and Catriona started in 2010 with a tiny polytunnel at the side of a shed and became fascinated with growing and the miracle that from one tiny seed you can produce wonderful food.

They pop in several times a week with ‘just picked’ in-season products, always delighting our shoppers. A variety of vegetables fruit and salads are grown on the farm – onion, cabbage, kale, broccoli, carrots, beetroot, leeks, brussel sprouts, courgette, tomatoes, cucumber, spinach, rhubarb, raspberries, worcesterberry, tayberry, sylvan berry, gooseberry, blackcurrant, redcurrants and apples. And not to forget the ever popular mixed leaves!

An Garrai Glas at Sullivans

An Garraí Glas

An Garraí Glas is a small organic vegetable farm by the shores of the Atlantic in the small Gaeltacht village of Inverin. Here, Angus has converted every inch of land surrounding his cottage to grow his very popular spinach and microgreens, as well as beans, beetroot, onions, radish and carrots – to mention some. Angus drives up to us once a week with bulging ‘just picked’ crates of greenery.

The French Market

The French Market

The French Market was established in 2004 by Pascal & Siobhan Bonnichon to import and distribute a wide range of quality and affordable French wines throughout Ireland.

Pascal grew up near Sancerre close to many of the long-established vineyards and he spent his early years learning all about the vines and complexities of wine production.

Franck Martinaud, on the left, delivers excellent service and knowledge alongside his characteristically understated dry wit on his weekly visit to our shop.

Sonett Ireland ecological laundry detergent

Sonett Ireland

Sonett is one of the pioneers of ecological laundry cleaners and detergents. If your goal is to achieve Zero Waste and also want to keep water and soil free of pesticides, your soap and detergent choices are very important. Sonett Ireland support organic, bio-dynamic farmers and buy all their plants from them since their start.

The oils used for their soaps and all of their essential oils are 100% certified organic or bio-dynamic since their start in 1977, making their products not only friendly to the environment but to people, as well. As they like to say, “they’re so pure, you can drink them.”

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