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Pals become a carbon zero certified organisation


Photo: Nick Marshall, Jay Reeve

Fast-growing RTD brand, Pals is quick off the mark to achieve milestones in their ambitious sustainability plan, developed with leading sustainability experts Go Well Consulting, after being in business for less than two years.

From the early beginnings of the brand, co-founders & Directors Mat Croad and Nick Marshall, had ambitions to build a sustainable business.

While many smaller businesses might choose to invest in growth-driving functions at this point in their journey, they made the choice to embed sustainability as a core pillar of their business.

From hiring a full-time sustainability manager to their small team and investing in the Toitū Envirocare’s internationally recognised carbon zero organisation programme, Pals is serious about building a business that does good.

Matt Croad, co-founder and director says, “We really wanted to invest ahead of the curve to make sure our business is moving towards a more sustainable model from an early stage. Delivering on these goals is not easy, and our bottom line will be affected, but it really is simply the right thing to do. We’re just trying to play our part by minimising our impact on the environment, giving back to our local communities and looking after our staff”

The Pals team has spent the last seven months measuring their company’s carbon footprint which has been independently audited and verified to Toitū’s rigorous standard.

Pals have even gone over and above the certification requirements to offset its unavoidable emissions by 125 per cent through funding New Zealand native forest projects and International Gold Standard clean technology projects.

The donation will directly remove the equivalent carbon dioxide from the atmosphere of their organisation’s carbon footprint plus an additional 25 per cent to go beyond neutrality.

Together with Toitū, Plas has developed ambitious target and reduction plans which you can read here. This is the first step of its carbon journey with ambitions to achieve product certification in 2023.

Pals sustainability plan goes beyond just helping the planet but commits to making a positive difference to pals in its local community.

This November, Pals is launching ‘Unsung Pals’ to celebrate and reward people who have made a positive impact in their community as nominated by their pals.

Pals will be looking for individuals who may have flown under the radar but have made a real difference to making their community a better place, whether that’s picking up rubbish at their local beach or delivering food parcels to those in need.

Pals will be giving away $30,000 split across three lucky ‘unsung pals’ who will each receive a prize up to the value of $10,000 (NZD) including; the reward chosen by their nominator pal up to the value of $5,000 and a $5,000 donation to their community work or to a chosen charity of their choice to help them keep making a positive difference.

“The Pals brand at its core is all about bringing people together and we really wanted to give back in a way that represents that community feel. There are so many people out there doing incredible work for people and the planet and we really just wanted to celebrate and reward it. Hopefully, we can encourage and inspire others too,” says co-founder and director Nick Marshall.

As the third pillar in their sustainability strategy, Pals is committed to helping out pals, including those in their team to make it a great place to work from day one. From bringing in flexible working and summer hours, providing a subsidy to purchase an e-bike and an impressive enhanced primary parental leave giving eligible employees up to 80 per cent pay for 16 weeks or 13 weeks at full pay.

Pals is leading the charge with this package being in line with some of New Zealand’s biggest corporations.

Pals continues to be the fastest growing RTD brand in New Zealand and is delivering real traction in new markets like Australia and the Pacific and Cook Islands. After a year in the market in Australia, the brand is seeing significant growth and has extended its offering to four flavours –  it seems Aussies can’t get enough of this independent Kiwi brand.

Pals’ launch of Vodka, Mango & Pineapple in New Zealand and Australia last month saw stores selling out in less than 15 minutes and the flavour quickly becoming Pals top selling flavour.

The Pals range now includes seven thirst-quenching flavours in the market;  Vodka, Central Otago Peach, Passionfruit & Soda; Vodka, Mango, Pineapple & Soda, Vodka, Hawke’s Bay Lime & Soda; Vodka, Watermelon, Mint & Soda, Gin, Hawke’s Bay Lemon, Cucumber & Soda; American Whiskey, Hawke’s Bay Apple & Soda and Zero Alcohol Central Otago Peach, Passionfruit & Soda. 

Pals range combines premium spirits with all-natural flavours and real fruit extracts.

It’s vegan, gluten-friendly and features calories as low as 28 per 100ml in its alcoholic versions and 5 in its non-alcoholic.

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