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Gerald McDonald & Company

9th April 2021

Gerald McDonald & Company Limited is an Essex-based family business that has been supplying the food and drink industry for over 100 years with quality ingredients. The business stocks a wide range of certified organic products from basil and black cumin, to sour cherry puree and lemon oil, at their purpose-built facility in Basildon. From modest beginnings, the family firm has grown and today imports and delivers juices, concentrates, herbs, spices, essential oils, and vegan cheeses to customers in the UK and worldwide.

Since 1917 the Estuary firm has been on a mission to source and provide the finest quality ingredients, working with trusted suppliers for generations, and blending, grinding, or milling ingredients to BRC ‘AA’ approved standards and customers’ exacting specifications. New product development has always been at the heart of things at Gerald McDonald & Company, but more recently this culture of innovation has seen the firm roll out a wide range of sustainable business initiatives – the result of which is a greener food and drink supply chain.

Reducing plastic use in the food supply chain

The company is taking the steps it can to reduce plastic waste, including:

  • Actively discourages suppliers from sending products in plastic drums (some countries are more receptive to this than others!)
  • Re-using plastic drums (and jerrycans) they receive.
  • Onsite they have a dedicated recycling process to deal with shrink wrap.
  • This summer, they are investing in a consultation process to advise on further reducing our general level of waste, including plastic.


Forklift truck operating in Gerald McDonald and Co, suppliers of a range of certified organic ingredients and juices

Gerald McDonald & Co is committed to eco improvements.

More energy efficient ambient, chilled and frozen food storage facility

The business has installed a voltage optimiser to control and regulate the electricity supply to equipment within their purpose-built facility in Basildon. They have also installed 384 solar panels, producing 87,500 kWh p.a. saving 46,375kg of CO², or approx. 15% of annual usage.

Recently the Basildon facility installed chargers for electric or PHEV vehicles, invested in LED lights with PIR activation and timers in all office production, warehouse and yard areas, and changed the refrigerant in reefer condensers thereby reducing Global Warming Potential (GWP).

Company Director Gerald McDonald says: “We’re proud of the green growth we’ve achieved. The business has now firmly established its sustainability credentials within the food and drink supply industry thanks to a considered commitment to eco improvements throughout the process from concept to delivery.”

Kate Willard OBE said “Gerald McDonald and Company may be over 100 years old, but they show that embracing green evolution is key to their success. I am excited to welcome them as an Estuary Visionary.”

Visit their website to find out more:

If you would like to nominate your organisation or one you know to become a Visionary please get in touch.