Working with Third-Party Vendors + Suppliers

Working with your existing vendors:

Key to any production is working with your vendors to find sustainable options and create ways to best bring your activation to life. 

Start by asking your existing vendors and suppliers what options they have available. From a procurement perspective, it is often more streamlined to continue working with a consistent supplier rather than engaging with a separate supplier for each item. Once alternative products are identified, work with your vendors and suppliers to make sure that their sustainable options meet the Blue List requirements. Beware of ‘Greenwashing’ as defined in our Greenwashing Guide. If sustainable options are not available, engage with any vetted sustainable suppliers featured in Oceanic Global’s Blue List of solution providers. Always work with locally available solution-providers where possible. 

Create sustainable event guidelines:

Develop sustainable event guidelines to engage and educate your vendors and any third-parties around your sustainability mission/ commitment. If a third-party event producer is hosting an event in your venue, these guidelines can be shared with them to ensure they abide by your sustainability program when using your space.

Guidelines should include, but are not limited to: 

  • Your business’ sustainability goals. Share the sustainability actions your business is taking and why this is important to your community!
  • Plastic-free catering.  
    • Eliminating single-use plastics from foodservice items such as serving items, dishware, cups, cutlery, and storage containers. 
    • Review Blue Guide: Events for a complete list of recommendations. 
  •  A waste management plan. 
    • This includes identifying waste streams and using optimal bin design and setup with relevant signage as well as any training or pre-event briefings required for day-of-event staff. 
    • Review the Blue Action: Waste Management Plan above for more details. 
  • Sustainably sourced food. 
    • Prioritize locally sourced and plant-based options. 
    • Review Blue Action sections above for further details. 
  • Sustainable decorations.  
    • Choose durable materials that can be repurposed for multiple events. 
    • Review Blue Guide: Events for further details. 
  • Only host vendors that sell merchandise that meets Oceanic Global’s sustainability guidelines.

If your current vendor does not have a suitable alternative, collaborate with them to create a new product or line that meets the Blue List requirements. Start the ripple effect: if your vendor creates new sustainable offerings, this will catalyze scalable behavior change and help shift the market towards responsible consumption. Alternatively, Blue Standard Consultants can make recommendations from Oceanic Global’s Blue List network of over 300 solution-providers around the globe. 

Working with external F+B vendors & caterers:

(Such as pop-ups, sponsor activations, food trucks, etc.)

Share sustainability guidelines well in advance and engage your vendors directly to ensure they understand the requirements of activating at your event. If possible, enforce the sustainability requirements by only inviting back vendors that were able to comply to provide incentives.

Another option is to purchase standardized items such as straws, utensils or take away containers to provide the vendors with if budget allows. In this case, ask vendors not to bring any of the above and have them collect the materials when they load-in. 

Provide reusable dishware, and ask all vendors to bring an extra member of staff to help with dishwashing in exchange for the free use of dishware and dishwashing station.

Oceanic Global can work with your business to develop sustainability guidelines for external vendors and suppliers if this is of interest. Click here