Green My Plate - Make Dishes, Not Waste
We sit down with Green My Plate co-founder Ryan "Jonesy" Jones to chat about his venture and vision for the future.
Ryan Jones - Green My Plate Co-founder
Jonesy, tell us in one sentence: What is it that Green My Plate do?
We supply reusable, light-weight, event safe plates, bowls and cutlery as well as wash stations, staff and compost bins to all types of events.
Where did this idea come from?
A few mates and I sat down over a beer (coincidentally at the Sustainable Living Festival in Melbourne). We talked about how unsustainable events were and what we thought we could do to create a solution. Green My Plate was born and we’re stoked to see it resonating with people within and outside our industry.
Green My Plate - creating sustainable events one delicious meal at a time
What motivated you to you choose this path?
Waste at events has been an issue for decades. Being Event Managers ourselves, we were sick of being part of the problem and wanted to create an easy solution that would create a difference for everyone who delivers or partakes in an event.
What inspires you?
I am inspired by the switch in mindset. For a long time sustainable businesses were run and understood only by “greenies”. Now more than ever people young and old are becoming much more aware of the waste they are producing and want to really change their habits!
What do you stand for?
Simple sustainable measures that have a long lasting impact on behavioral change. Creating new norms is how we will be adaptive to change so we can preserve the planet we enjoy!
We have found that everyone wants to be more sustainable, but a lot of people don’t know where to start. Remember when the Yellow Bin was difficult to understand (maybe showing my age?). We want the Pink Bin to be the new norm!
What’s your greatest creative achievement so far?
Before Covid 19 abruptly put a hold on our plans. Having the 2020 Melbourne Food and Wine Festival contract us to deliver our reusable system for their event was an amazing achievement. It was going to save over 20,000 single use plates/bowls from landfill!!
Starting a business is a rollercoaster. What thought keeps you going through the hard times?
Positive reinforcement from peers, friends and family! We know we’re on the right track, we just need to remain positive and be patient
What have been the biggest challenges?
One of the key challenges to our business is we don't have an allocated budget line within an event budget. We've worked hard to develop a system that works on all scales and budgets. Whether it's a local community event or major event we want all our clients to be able to implement our system. We understand a reusable system can seem daunting, so the best way for new clients to use our system is to introduce it in stage.
Who else is behind you, supporting you on this journey?
My parents are super supportive and learning about what we do all the time. Baby Boomers are probably the first to admit that they need to learn a bit more about sustainability. My mum is constantly the first person to like any of our posts! My sister has been an inspiration in showing me how to turn my passion into a career.My partner Clare has been an awesome support, as a fellow event worker she's been an awesome sounding board and super supportive.
What one tool in your work could you not do without?
Haha! Dishwashing Liquid!
Do you have another day job? What is it?
Sure do! I was previously a Senior Event Manager at Spark Event Group, but have recently relocated to the Gold Coast to take on a dream job as Event Manager for Supercars. Absolutely loving it so far!
What’s coming up for Green My Plate? What goals do you have?
This was originally our goal for 2020, however for 2021 we want to divert 100,000 plates from landfill. This equates to 500 Wheelie Bins, which is as heavy as approximately 12 Giraffes!
Where can we see your work? Follow the journey? Join the Green My Plate community?
At the moment on our website and social media channels you’ll be able to learn all about us and see us in action. With major events slowly coming back, we've been doing a lot of smaller events (weddings).