The Jam Horse, eco-friendly business in the town centre

Doncaster business woman Rachel Whitaker is hoping her ‘bring back your jar’ scheme will help those following a no waste lifestyle and also reduce waste from the preserves business.

By The Newsroom
Wednesday, 22 May, 2019, 06:48
Rachel Whitaker, owner of The Jam Horse

Located on Scot Lane in the town centre the shop is predominantly a preserves seller, owner Rachel Whitaker makes homemade jams, chutneys and curds.

The use of biodegradable coffee cups and plant based food containers make The Jam Horse an eco friendly business.

Apple relish made at The Jam Horse

“The whole ethos of The Jam Horse is not to use additives or preservatives and to do things as naturally as possible with the products.

“So when I moved into to shop I thought I need to make everything eco-friendly, so the plates, bowls and our cutlery is recyclable,” she said.

Rachel uses food containers made of Bagasse which is compostable and recycle friendly.

“It’s plant based. It’s the dry pulpy residue which is left after the extraction of juice from sugar cane,” she continued.

Jam on shelf at The Jam Horse.

Rachel is passionate about making small changes to make her business more eco-friendly, so much so that all of her compostable waste is taken to Oak Farm in Auckley.

She said: “I try to dispose of all of our packaging as ecologically as I can.

“All our cardboard goes down to the local sheep farm. It goes underneath the compost heap so it all breaks down and then spread on the land.”

The Jam Shop stocks 19 Doncaster based businesses, as well as being eco-friendly Rachel is a champion for supporting small businesses around her.

Many of those businesses are also trying to make themselves more environmentally aware.

She said: “The Tea Experience are looking into alternatives of packaging tea and House Coffee use paper to package their produce.

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“A lot of the companies we stock package in glass or cardboard which is great.”

But this is just the start for The Jam Horse, Rachel has plans to join the no waste movement with the inclusion of a ‘bring your jar back’ scheme.

“If you bring back a clean jar and lid we will refill it for you, and you will pay 50p less.”

This will be a rolling out programme, starting off with a few products but as her business grows so will the range of produce available.

Rachel also offers a no waste approach for her coffee. If you bring in a reusable coffee cup your beverage will be £1 instead of the regular £1.95.

“I just want to try to get people to reuse things. I think it’s getting more mainstream.

“I’m sure there’s more that I can do and as time goes by I will try to do as much as I possibly can.”

Rachel practises eco-friendly ways in her home life as well as in her business.

She gets her fruit and veg unpackaged wherever she can and buys meat from a butcher rather than from the supermarket.

“I have always been very pro animal rights. When I was doing my A-levels, I wrote a piece on fox hunting and dolphin fishing.

“So right from being young I’ve been militant about protecting the environment and animals so it just made sense to be eco- friendly in my business,” she said.

In the upcoming future Rachel is going to be selling Doncaster butterscotch, which has a rich history with the town.

“I think the craze of Butterscotch started in the 1800’s in Donny, with links to the races.

“But it’s been gone for years, I’m planning on making my mother's recipe. I would describe is similar to the taste of Werther's Originals.”She hopes to partner with the racecourse itself to bring back a bit of nostalgia on race days.