The last 18 months haven’t been easy for Nicolette Bosschieter, founder & owner of PANCAKES Amsterdam. Established in 2007, PANCAKES, pre-COVID, was booming. With six Amsterdam based restaurants, Nicolette was busy flipping pancakes for hungry tourists and locals alike. Three lockdowns later, life looks a little different. Due to the unprecedented circumstances, Nicolette was forced to fire all her staff and close one restaurant completely. A really tough period. However, as the great Winston Churchill once said…’never waste a good crisis’. Which is exactly what she did. In order to spread the risk, PANCAKES Amsterdam setup beachside in the Dutch town, Egmond aan Zee. PANCAKES was no longer exclusively Amsterdam. She also gained time and space to think – think about what she really wanted for the future of the business. Something on her long term wish list was to run a carbon neutral enterprise. Which is where her journey started with EO’s Carbon Footprint Track.
Why Carbon Footprint?
For Nicolette, the planet is paramount. She explains that as a company they already have a good social conscience, employing socially disadvantaged people and actively working for the community. It seemed logical to get started with reducing their Carbon Footprint. The big question; where to begin? They got involved with ‘Klimaatplein’ – a platform from which to measure your current footprint and make necessary reductions or compensations. Nicolette also invested a great deal of time speaking with her contemporaries and researching the how-tos, never believing exactly what google had to say, but check, check checking to ensure the correct information.They’ve now established some clear goals; 2021 – 20% reduction, 2022 – 30% reduction, 2023 – 40% reduction, 2024 – climate neutral, 2025 climate positive. Changes so far include a new gas supplier, with BIO certification – amounting to a 50% reduction in carbon emissions. The same supplier also delivers milk to Friesland Campina – meaning a great story from two angles. Nicolette elaborates; ‘We’ve also found a supplier to make our merchandise on demand, meaning no need for excess stock, plus we’ve got a European BIO cotton supplier, who’s making our employees shirts. We’re already making steps’.
These steps have yet to translate into an increase in revenue, however the positive impact can be felt within the company as a core. Plus Nicolette recognizes the duty we have for our future generations. They need us to make the changes, and now.
And in the long term?
When it comes to future plans, number one is to start making their customers aware of their actions. They’ve got big plans to become climate positive in under 15 years – so Nicolette and her team really have their work cut out for them. Plus, her BHAG; For PANCAKES Amsterdam to be a climate positive enterprise by 2025 with restaurants in Holland and abroad.