By Andrea Tan

We are excited to be back at Pernod Ricard Asia for a second year of training on The Bar World of Tomorrow!

After a long COVID year, we finally got to host our second cohort, in-person Bar World of Tomorrow Training at Pernod Ricard Hong Kong. The Food Made Good HK team was invited back to the snazzy Pernod Ricard office overlooking the Hong Kong harbor, where we got to engage bartenders in a full day workshop training 12 bartenders to consider shifting to sustainable practices in the bar industry.

The Bar World of Tomorrow, set up by Pernod Ricard in partnership with Trash Tiki, the Sustainable Restaurants Association and Food Made Good HK sets out to shift the entire bar industry towards sustainability. The goal is to train 10,000 bartenders to be sustainability leaders in the global drinks industry by 2030. The training encompasses five key pillars: brand knowledge and product curation, sourcing fresh ingredients, responsible service and identifying sustainable bar set up solutions, bar management, and workplace with staff culture.

The bartenders engaged in matching game

As a newcomer to Food Made Good HK’s consultancy training and being involved in the behind-the-scenes preparations, I was fascinated to learn the breadth of topics covered. A fun light-touch knowledge quiz was conducted at the start and end of the workshop to ascertain the level of understanding of attendees. The bartenders certainly demonstrated their heightened awareness and comprehension of sustainable bar practices, by scoring an average of 7 out of 8 at the end, as compared to 2 out of 7 at the start.

Interacting with sustainability activity

Pertinent issues surfaced and were met with meaningful discussion throughout the workshop. One bartender asked ‘What does mental health have to do with sustainability?’ Heidi invited the participants to explore this, and was met with confused gazes around the room. Initially, no one saw the direct relation between work life balance and various workplace policies with mental health. However, by the end of the workshop, bartenders became well-versed with how all five sections of the Bar World of Tomorrow framework and how they interplay with sustainability. Interactive activities were also held throughout the session, enabling participants to mingle and exchange ideas on different bar practices. It was a wonderful exchange of ideas and discussion for both bartenders and the Food Made Good HK team.

Hannah Melville of Scotch Whisky

We were also enlightened by presentations made by Hannah Melville (Brand Ambassador for Scotch Whisky), Benjamin Sicard (Brand Ambassador of Mumm & Perrier-Jouet) and Athena Chiu (Brand Ambassador of Lillet). It was wonderful to hear about how Ballantine’s replaced their plastic closure with aluminum closers, saving 837 tonnes of plastic every year. In efforts to increase energy efficiency, 100% of electricity used at The Glenlivet is from wind and hydro power in Scotland, making their site 26% more efficient than the industry average for malt distilleries of the size and type. Mumm & Perrier Jouet has earned the Sustainable Viticulture Status and highest level of French national certification for High Environmental Value since 2016, and they aim to have their grape suppliers meet the same outstanding standards by 2030. Lillet is also committed to sustainability, as they employ sustainable agriculture practices and are committed to reducing carbon footprint throughout their supply chain.

Next up, we heard about some real life sustainable bar practices of HK bartenders. Most bartenders agreed to making full use of reusable containers to store ingredients and spirits – this is a quick win. Many bartenders also agreed that they currently only provide straws when requested, as opposed to serving them with drinks. Something new I learned was that straws are typically served with drinks that come in wine glasses, i.e. aperol spritz, while stirrers are needed in cocktails served with more ice. In extending ingredient availability when making drinks, it was also interesting to learn how some bartenders utilize dehydrated sugarcane as garnish, while using seasonality as an inspiration for drinks.

What a productive and fun-filled training, we look forward to more ahead and helping bartenders to champion sustainability! Thank you to the bartenders from Five Samurai, Apothecary, Barcode, Tell Camellia, Furutu, ZZURA, Carbon, OBP and The Daily Tot for attending. A big thanks to Pernod Ricard Asia for their generous hosting, ambassadors Hannah, Benjamin and Athena, and our Food Made Good HK team for their support!

Want to join our training? Learn how we can support your organisation in delivering bespoke educational sustainability courses. Please get in touch at [email protected]