Why Peat-Free Matters
It’s not that we enjoy making our lives difficult, it’s just that, when you launch a new company, you get to choose your own founding principles - things to stand for – and this is one of ours. At Sproutl, you can only buy peat free compost. And we’d like to tell you why. *pulls on geography teacher turtle neck*
Most traditional multi-purpose compost bags contain up to 70% peat – and that peat is mined from boglands. Peat mining isn’t gentle. It devastates the land, ripping out a delicate habitat that supports hundreds of rare and endangered species.
But it’s the damage to our climate that is the most worrying.
Broadly speaking, peat is made up of dead plants, saturated and preserved in water, locking away vast amounts of carbon beneath the surface. And we mean vast. Though peatlands account for just 3% of the Earth’s land area, they hold twice as much carbon as the world’s forests. And here’s the problem...
The more they’re damaged, the more carbon they release into the atmosphere - a staggering 2bn tonnes a year at present.
And there we were thinking that gardening was good for the environment.
Most recently, the UK government announced a ban on the sale of peat compost from 2024, in hopes that this renewed approach will drive more meaningful change. It’s a complex problem to solve, particularly when it comes to the importation of plants already containing peat in their pots.
You’ll find that some of our potted plants still contain peat, but we’re working hard with our partners behind the scenes to eliminate peat from their products. We’ve already made the decision to only sell Soil Association certified peat-free compost, alongside all sorts of natural soil improving marvels.
Whilst going peat-free may not be a straightforward change, it’s nothing short of essential.