Richmond Duck Pond market vows to go plastic-free by next year

The Duck Pond market in Richmond has given traders a year to eliminate their use of all plastics.

The food and crafts market, sandwiched between Hill Street and the riverside in Heron Square, runs every Saturday and Sunday, and follows a passionate mission statement of ‘Local, Ethical, Sustainable’ trading.

Richmond market manager and former school nurse Kelly McEntee, 47, said that the Duck Pond Market is committed to making Richmond, and eventually all seven of the Duck Pond markets, plastic free.

The market organisers and traders strongly believe in organic, reusable, up-cycled, compostable and second-hand products.

Miss McEntee, who runs Duck Pond Markets with long-time friend and founder Caron Pook, 45, said: “We’ve banned all non-disposable, non-compostable plastics from our markets, and we’ve given everyone a year to comply, because we don’t think it’s something we can do straight away.

“We don’t allow recycled which is a bit controversial, because often recycled is only recycled once, it still causes a problem.”

Miss McEntee said that the alternative to plastic is compostable, bio-degradable packaging.

She added: “We expect it from everybody.”

As the Duck Pond Market turns 10-years old this year, both organisers and traders are committed to becoming more sustainable and ethical.

Adhering to the values of the market is essential for all stalls and businesses.

Already, traders are not allowed to bring single use plastic to the market, and in 2017 the use of palm oil was banned, meaning products like Nutella cannot be brought onto the market.

Miss McEntee said: “Our application process is quite stringent.”

All food products are vetted, and they look for mainly locally, handmade products which are in line with the market’s values.

Duck Pond markets have set a precedent for other Richmond businesses, as Richmond Council condemned the effects of plastic pollution January this year and said they were committed to being an exemplary borough in reducing plastic use.

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