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Green Is The New Black

How The Conscious Festival powered by Holland & Barrett Is Actually Conscious

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The Conscious Festival powered by Holland & Barrett is just weeks away and there is so much we want you to know. But at the core of everything we offer you is sustainability and we felt it necessary to enlighten you on how we weave consciousness into the Conscious Festival because there is a lot more to it than recycling. 

Since we call ourselves the Conscious Festival, it’s paramount for us that we lead the way in being sustainable at every touchpoint across our festival. We also feel it’s important to share with the world the #LittleGreenSteps that we take to reach our sustainable goals, not to cover our butts but more to inspire you (and other festivals) to do the same. Of course, we recycle—but this year we got creative and further embraced going vegan, we found news ways to be carbon neutral, and are taking zero-waste to a whole new level when it comes to food waste. And the way we see it, if we can have 5,000 guests and pull this off, you can throw a dinner party and do the same. This is how we do it…

We’re (almost) zero-waste

While we’d love stake claim of being zero-waste, we’ll be the first to admit that for an event this size it’s almost impossible (not entirely but close). We opt for honesty and say we’re low-waste but employ any tactic we can think of to get ourselves close to zero-waste. Shinpuru is one of the super cool brands from right here in Singapore that helps us by providing us with reusable crockery. When you order food at the Conscious Festival, it will come on plates provided by Shinpuru, who help us wash them too (bless them). Our friends at Revolv also return to the Conscious Festival with their reusable cup system which helps us cut single-use plastic cups (for wine) from the equation.

We’re holding ourselves to account

We wanted to make sure we’re doing everything we can to leave as little impact as possible. So we teamed up with REAL IMPACT to audit our zero-waste efforts. REAL IMPACT is an impact-driven, outcome-based certification body that will ensure we’re meeting the standards we’ve set ourselves. It’s the first certification body to introduce an end-to-end Zero Waste Certification programme, and they’ll be watching our every move.

Have you seen our super green venue?

This year we’re testing the waters at a new venue, and South Beach graciously opened its doors (or more like its terraces) to us so we could move several features of the festival outdoors. This move also helps us cut our carbon emissions since we’re using less air conditioning and less lighting. The venue itself is everything we ever wanted out of an eco-friendly lifestyle destination. Beautiful beyond aesthetics, its wave-like microclimatic canopy naturally mimics a calming sea breeze all while harvesting renewable energy and green water. The sprawling development exemplifies Singapore’s vision of it becoming a garden and is the winner of two Green Mark Platinum Awards as well as the Sustainable Development category at the FIABCI Singapore Awards. It’s not hard to understand why we’re working with this incredible venue for this year’s edition of the Conscious Festival.

We’re sleeping green

Part of our programme requires us to host guests from abroad (mostly for our TALKS track). It’s necessary and unavoidable. We also need to house them, so we’ve chosen to put to them up at the greenest venues we could find. Naturally, PARKROYAL on Pickering was our first choice. The hotel has been dubbed the ‘World’s Leading Green City Hotel’ and is a bucket list item for conscious travellers around the world. It incorporates a hotel-in-a-garden concept with energy-saving features throughout the property like an innovative solar energy system. Our own out-of-town team will stay at HMLET, a co-living community for young professionals that has sustainability and social responsibility ingrained in its culture.

We’re eating green

The Conscious Festival is a 100% vegan event. Fortunately, today the word vegan means so much more than just salad and vegan vendors are not only easy to come by but offer a diverse array of tantalizing tastes.

We’re eliminating food waste

Here’s something new. Insectta is coming on this year to help us deal with food waste. How? With insects. As the first urban insect farm in Singapore who rear the black soldier fly (hermetia illucens), Insectta takes food waste and returns it into the economy as valuable products. It recycles some 500kg of food waste every day, and we’re happy to be joining forces with such a forward-thinking project. 

We’re offering free water (as it should be)

Together with the Ayer Ayer project, an art collective who design hydration fountains, you’ll be able to fill up your reusable bottles for free at the Conscious Festival.

We’re recycling (duh)

This might seem obvious, but instead of trash bins, you’ll find recycling bins (that we pay for) scattered around the Conscious Festival. Worried about trash? Consume consciously instead.

We’re offsetting our carbon

Since we’re not perfect (no one is), we will work with Carbon Care Asia to ensure the Conscious Festival is carbon neutral. More specifically, the project we are supporting is the Mangshi Household Biogas Tanks Project in Yunnan Province, China and the Guazhou 100MW Solar Power Project in Gansu Province, China. Find more information on the initiatives here.

And finally, we’re planting trees

This year, we don’t want just to be carbon neutral; we want to be carbon negative. To do that, we’re going to plant trees. We’ve partnered with EcoMatcher in the Philippines who are on a mission to plant one billion trees by 2023. It currently works with 25 foundations who specialise in tree-planting and are very transparent about their initiatives (we love transparency). It also offers a platform to integrate tree-planting into small and large businesses, in the hopes of getting the workforce more engaged in tree-planting (like us).


The Conscious Festival by Green Is The New Black takes place from 11 am – 7 pm on Saturday 2nd November & Sunday 3rd November 2019 at the South Beach, 26 Beach Road, Singapore

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Olivia is a bon vivant with an insatiable appetite for...everything. Upon being horrified at the amount of rubbish she produced in a single day, her journey towards finding a better balance between being extravagant yet sustainable began. Like most obsessions, down the rabbit hole she went and it wasn’t long before she decided to shift her sustainable preachings from Friday nights after too much wine to every day at Green Is The New Black. Olivia is still trying to figure all this ‘the end of the world’ stuff out, so she is keepin’ it real, one super small #LittleGreenStep at a time. Be like Olivia.