Happy New Year everyone! Welcome to Bride and Tonic to any new viewers out there and huge congratulations if you are newly engaged or anyone getting married this year in 2018! This month’s Ethical Bride post is all about the wedding cake. For those planning a sustainable or eco wedding and want some ideas on how to make their cake choice more earth kind, then read on…
Please note – we don’t expect people to follow every single one of these guidelines, and understand we can’t make every single thing in our lives ethical (unless we live in a hole in the woods, probably naked and eating leaves?) but maybe, just maybe by supporting one of these ideas, we could help the world a little bit at a time. Here’s how:
one. speak to your baker – before you commit to your baker have a chat with them to discuss your ideas and see if they can incorporate any sustainable practises within their bake. Can they use organic, locally sourced ingredients? How about seasonal toppings? Will they make a vegan cake?
two. organic – by using organic ingredients, your cake will not only be pesticide free but you will be doing your bit for the environment. Shopping organic means there is a reduction in water pollution, land is kept more fertile, ecosystems are preserved, plus let’s not forget a better taste! Try The Organic Wedding Cake Company.
three. fair-trade – look into buying Fairtrade ingredients to ensure better prices, decent working conditions and fair terms of trade for farmers and workers. Many of the ingredients needed for cakes can be bought Fairtrade such as sugars and chocolate.
four. shop locally – find a baker local to your venue to help with transportation and to help reduce your carbon footprint. You might also want to discuss with your baker where they source their ingredients – are the eggs from a local farm perhaps?
five. ethical eggs – it’s not just about free range these days. What does that term even mean? Many hens may have access to the great outdoors, technically making them ‘free range’ however with the horrific cramped conditions they live in inside the barns they may never actually reach freedom through sheer volume of other hens in their way, or be too terrified to venture outdoors. Whilst we have an image of the free range chicken living on a cutesy farm, the reality is entirely different. Male chicks are killed soon after hatching and often in horrific ways. Females will have their sensitive beaks cut to stop them pecking at their cohabitants – which only happens because of their cramped conditions. We can help by buying Soil Association organic eggs, which do not allow beak trimming and keep hens in smaller flocks, however this still does not end the issue of male chicks being killed off. It may be time to keep your own hens or maybe you need to go…
seven. seasonal – shopping seasonally means you will save money and eat better flavoured, fresher food, with less air miles and therefore a reduced carbon footprint! Try this handy guide for seasonal UK fruits to decorate or fill your cake and ask your baker to source British.
eight. food miles – yes food miles! How far has your food had to travel until it ends up on your plate? When planning for a sustainable wedding cake, think about reducing the carbon footprint by trying to avoid too many ingredients shipped in from abroad by supporting local businesses and shopping seasonally.
nine. decorations – be it your cake toppers or plinth, florals or ribbons, how you decorate you cake can be an eco affair too! Recycle and repurpose anything from ribbons to plinths (rustic log cut offs anyone?!) or use something meaningful and with an emotional connection. Use a friends topper or opt for an edible topper like sugar figures or some beautiful organic, local flowers. For sustainable florals check out our whole post dedicated to them here. For a really meaningful and heartfelt eco wedding cake topper try Star House.
ten. ditch the cake – yes you heard it, very controversial but for some you might just want to cull the cake! You are probably already serving dessert to your guests and many wedding cakes might not get eaten. Maybe you might choose to have a ‘cheese’ cake instead as a cheese and biscuits course or evening snack for guests, or set up a cake table (find out how here!)
We hope these tips have given you some food for thought for planing an eco wedding cake! For more Ethical Bride tips and advice click here.