Responsible Sourcing

Responsible Sourcing

Sustainable procurement

Taronga is also in the early phase of investigating how sustainable procurement can be improved to make it more holistic, basing the process on a scientific approach and aligning to the new Sustainable Procurement Standard ISO20400 launched in early 2017. 

As part of this objective, a sustainability scorecard is being developed, which is anticipated to have significant impact to ensure sustainability is taken into consideration throughout Taronga’s supply chain. 

Sustainable purchasing policy

Taronga has a Sustainable Purchasing Policy in place to ensure that environmental sustainability is always considered when purchasing goods and services. 

Within this policy Taronga is ensuring that suppliers adhere to the following requirements: 

  • A total of 85% of office paper to contain recycled content 
  • A minimum 4-star rating under the Minimum Energy Performance Standards Scheme (MEPS) 
  • A minimum of 4-star rating under the Water Efficiency Labelling and Standards Scheme (WELS) 
  • Products and services for outdoor use Smart Approved WaterMark 

For Sustainable building requirements, please refer to our ‘Ecologically Sustainable Buildings’ page.

Sustainable produce

Taronga has a strong stance on environmental sustainability, animal welfare and conservation associated with food products it sells and serves at its various food outlets, functions and events. 

Taronga is committed to ensuring all the food we sell and serve is environmentally sustainable and responsibly sourced. 

  • we aim to serve only MSC or ASC certified seafood at our food outlets, functions and events
  • we only source RSCPA certified chicken and free range eggs
  • we are working with our supply chain to seek complete transparency around sourcing and commitments, with the aim of ensuring that all branded products sold on-site use 100% Certified Sustainable Palm Oil
  • we work closely with food suppliers and our catering partner Epicure, to ensure that food products are locally sourced and seasonal, where feasible

Seafood

Taronga understands that the world’s oceans and marine wildlife are essential to the well-being of our current and future generations. Taronga also understands that our marine waters and wildlife are under threat from the many uses of the marine environment such as commercial and recreational fishing. 

Fish caught through unsustainable methods or sourced from poorly managed aquacultures can place a significant burden on the natural environment and on already over exploited or sensitive fish stocks. It can also result in bi-catch my capturing non-target fish species, including dolphins, turtles, whales, sharks and birds. 

Taronga has assessed the relative sustainability of our marine animals’ diets. Some of our seals eat more than 1,000 kilograms of seafood per year and it is important that we feed all of our animals a diet close to what they would eat in the wild. It is also important to us that we source this seafood as responsibly as possible and we therefore use the scientific assessments of the Sustainable Fisheries Partnership (SFP) to guide these sourcing decisions. 

In promoting sustainable seafood awareness, industry accreditation and consumer uptake, Taronga acknowledges and supports the efforts of independent sustainable seafood certifiers such as Marine Stewardship Council (MSC). 

In partnership with our catering partners, EPICURE, we have Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification of Taronga’s The View cafe, the first Chain of Custody MSC certified cafe in Australia. This ensures that visitors to The View at Taronga Zoo know that the seafood they purchase during their visit helps support sustainable management of fish stocks, marine ecosystems and fisheries jobs. 

Throughout Taronga’s other food outlets, functions and events we aim to serve fish that is either MSC or ASC certified, depending on the respective seafood species. 

Poultry

Australians consume an average of 45kg of chicken meat a year. This may come from chickens or broilers raised indoors in barren sheds. Meat chickens have been bred to produce large breast muscle and will grow to slaughter weight in 35 days. This rapid growth may result in birds becoming so heavy they suffer from leg disorders, joint problems and heart failure. 

For animal cruelty reasons, Taronga only sources RSPCA certified chicken and free range eggs. The RSPCA certification is an alternative to conventionally raised chicken and provides a better welfare standard. RSPCA approved chicken comes from birds raised in an enriched environment with space to move, good lighting, perches and dry litter floor covering to scratch and dust bathe.

Palm oil

In November 2015, Taronga became an Ordinary member of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), positioning us alongside leading global organisations engaged in the sustainability of palm oil. The RSPO’s mission is to transform markets to make sustainable palm oil the norm. As it stands, the RSPO is the only credible certification scheme for sustainable palm oil and the best option for making this transformation happen. 

Taronga does not advocate for the boycott of palm oil, rather we are working to encourage the major users of palm oil in Australia commit to a 100% Certified Sustainable Palm Oil Australia. 

The reason for this is that we believe that boycotting palm oil is not a viable solution, as it diverts markets towards other oils such as sunflower and soy which require significantly more land to produce equivalent quantities. 

Certified Sustainable Palm Oil (CSPO) is oil that comes from plantations that have been independently certified as meeting the standards of the RSPO. So if manufacturers only use 100% CSPO, they can still feed the world’s hungry mouths without causing further deforestation. 

As such, we do not boycott products containing palm oil in our food outlets. We are working with our supply chain to seek complete transparency around sourcing and commitments and ensure that all branded products sold on-site use 100% Certified Sustainable Palm Oil. 

Local and seasonal produce

Taronga works closely with food suppliers and our catering partner Epicure, to ensure that food products are locally sourced and seasonal, where feasible. Locally sourced produce results in reduced “food miles”, meaning that less carbon dioxide emissions are generated through transportation. 

On the other hand, seasonal produce are less susceptible to pests, reducing the need for pesticides and have less requirements for synthetic fertilisers. This means that it places less of a burden on both our own, and the planet's health.