As an impact-led lender, sustainability and good environmental practice is important to us – here at SWIG Finance, we are all advocates of a sustainable future.

Whilst sustainability is a far-reaching topic with complex challenges that are often industry specific, we all know that even the smallest changes can help contribute to tackling some of the biggest issues.

With the Race to NetZero in full force, sustainability is becoming one of the highest priority issues for businesses, and we are encouraged to see that many of our customers incorporating environmental issues into the core values of their businesses.

Our business manager and environmental lead, Mike Chapman, shines a spotlight on just a few of the businesses that SWIG has supported who are champions in sustainability.

BiJimini SpicesWiltshire-based entrepreneur, Luke Craven, has developed a Cajun spice product made from edible insects. Luke came up with the idea when researching sustainable options for feeding a growing society – cricket farming produces significantly less carbon emissions than any other animal farming, and they produce higher nutritional benefits as well.

On the topic, Luke said “It’s an environmentally friendly way of mass-producing protein with other huge health benefits”

You can find out more here; https://www.swigfinance.co.uk/edible-insect-entrepreneur-launches-eco-friendly-food-business/

BiJimini Spices

Luke Craven, Founder of BiJimini Spices


Forest Friendly
Led by Kirsty Scott, this Gloucestershire-based start up helps their customers to reduce their plastic usage by offering reusable and eco-friendly alternative products. Forest Friendly’s online shop offers a large range of sustainable products including home care, body care, toys, clothing and food and drink.

We asked Kirsty why it is important to opt for sustainable products “It is important to opt for sustainable products because the planet has already surpassed world overshoot day for 2021. This means that we have used more resources than the Earth is producing. This cannot continue long term and shopping in refill shops like mine is a really easy thing that anyone can do. They’re accessible and often cheaper. Re-use your packaging and avoid buying more. It can seem daunting to change the way you do things but just ask and your local shop owner will be more than happy to guide you.”

Read more about Forest Friendly here; https://www.swigfinance.co.uk/forest-of-dean-business-finds-friendly-finance/

Forest Friendly

Forest Friendly

YumelloThis health and wellness brand places great emphasis on the benefits of ethical supply chains. Furthermore, they have worked relentlessly to ensure that their production is carbon neutral by using solar power energy. Based in Bristol, Yumello supplies ethically sourced nut butters to some of the biggest retailers across the country.

We spoke to co-owner Esther ElHajji to find out more about the benefits of ethical supply chains; “Our aim is to create a responsible business, leaving the planet in a better place than we found it. We’re committed to a lighter footprint on the earth and making our products the right way. Being sustainable is never a job done and that’s why we’ll always push ourselves to be better and do better for people and the planet.”

You can read more about Yumello’s journey here: https://www.swigfinance.co.uk/fast-growth-for-ethical-food-business/

Yumello Co-Founders Omar Elhajji (L) & Esther Elhajji (R)

Let’s Get NakedBased in Launceston, Cornwall, Let’s Get Naked is a refill shop offering a wide range of products including grains, pastas, spices, seeds, dried fruits as well as household products such as soaps, hair products, natural deodorant and reusable bags, cups and bowl savers.

The shop was founded by entrepreneur Jade Harvey. We asked Jade about the benefits of opting for refills, she said “Changing your shopping ways and opting to refill is such an easy and affordable way to cut down your household waste and shop more environmentally friendly. Not only are you helping the planet but it’s so satisfying unpacking your shopping and having no packaging to throw away or recycle. It’s not about everyone doing it perfectly but if we all make an effort to make small day to day changes where we can, it’s those changes that can have a big impact.”

You can read all about Jade’s start up journey here: https://www.swigfinance.co.uk/funding-boost-for-cornish-refill-shop/

Let’s Get Naked Founder, Jade Harvey (L) & SWIG Business Manager Nicki Kimberley (R)

About SWIG Finance

SWIG Finance is the South West’s leading Community Development Financial Institution. We are passionate about bringing social and economic benefits to people and places in the South West.

We do this by providing support and finance to Start Ups and growing SMEs that can create and secure employment opportunities.

As the South West’s leading delivery partner for Start Up Loans UK, we can provide Start Up Loans from £500 – £25,000. For more information visit https://www.swigfinance.co.uk/start-up-loans/

We also have business loans from £25,001 to £250,000 available to South West SMEs who cannot access sufficient funding from their bank https://www.swigfinance.co.uk/business-loans/

For businesses based in or relocating to Cornwall and the Isles of Scilly, we work with The FSE Group, the appointed CIOSIF Fund Manager, on delivering smaller business loans as part of the £20 million allocation for debt finance in Cornwall & the Isles of Scilly https://www.swigfinance.co.uk/ciosif/

If you would like to have an informal discussion about your funding requirements, get in touch with our friendly and professional team to find out how we can help: info@swigfinance.co.uk / 01872 227 930.