Ziptrek Giants Cookbook
About this Cookbook
This cookbook has been designed by the Ziptrek Giants, our internal sustainability committee, to inspire Sea to Sky residents, and more broadly BC residents to cook more consciously and consider the impacts of where, when, and how food has come to be on their plates.
We have taken favourite meal and recipe ideas from our team members at Ziptrek and suggested plant-based and minimal waste ingredient alternatives whenever possible. These alternatives are based on local availability here in Whistler, but we encourage you to research options in your own area. There is nothing more satisfying than sitting down to a meal sourced from locally grown produce, supporting local businesses, minimizing food kilometers, and minimizing harm to other living creatures.
Thank you so much to those accommodating local businesses who opened your doors to us filming and photographing in your stores and more importantly, thank you for providing our community with fresh, seasonal, organic, plant-based and minimally packaged ingredients! Our bodies and the planet are so much better for it!
If you've ever had the pleasure of ziplining with Ziptrek Ecotours you'll have heard or seen a lot of information whilst on our course about The Natural Step. The Natural Step is the sustainability framework chosen by the Municipality of Whistler to help guide them in their quest to become a completely sustainable society by the year 2050! At Ziptrek we define sustainability quite simply as "living within the capacity of the planet to support life".
This is a huge task for any municipality, let alone a tourist town such as Whistler, but absolutely fundamental for all societies around the globe, if we are to heal and restore the planet. With a mission as complex and important as this, guidance in the form of a framework is paramount to success.
The Natural Step was designed by a Swedish Oncologist named Dr. Karl-Henrik Robèrt. You can think of The Natural Step as a set of care instructions for looking after our planet.
The four care instructions of The Natural Step can easily be remembered using: Take, Make, Break, Cake!
We must be careful not to TAKE too much out of the earth itself, for instance, fossil fuels, metals, and minerals.
Be careful not to MAKE too many chemicals and products that cannot then be processed by the earth.
Be careful not to BREAK the life-giving ecosystems on the surface of the earth.
And be conscious to share with others to ensure that all human needs are met - everyone gets a slice of the CAKE.
As you explore the recipes on this website, you will notice we have made suggestions at the end of the recipes of ways that you can modify the recipes to more closely align with the four care instructions of The Natural Step. In the section below we have shared some examples of how choices you make with your food can meet the requirements of the four care instructions.
When possible, shop local
By shopping locally sourced produce and food products you are limiting your indirect contribution to the accumulation of greenhouse gas emissions via longer-journey transportation of such goods. To take it further, shopping in your immediate community means you could limit emissions from your own transportation of such goods to your home. Consider cycling, walking, or using public transport!
Seasonal foods are best for our environment when locally sourced. To clarify, when talking about 'seasonal' food it can simply mean it is grown in season in the location it is being grown. For example, you can still technically eat 'seasonal' food that was grown at an international destination and then imported to your area where it is not currently in season; as long as it was in-season at the time and location of growth. If a farmer were to grow something locally, but out of season, it is likely to require the use of a greenhouse which requires energy. If this energy is produced through the use of fossil fuels, it is contributing to the systematic accumulation of substances from the earth's crust. The European Food Information Council EUFIC explains the complexity of this subject here.
When possible, shop plastic free
Compounds produced by society like plastics cannot be broken down by nature as quickly as we create them. A single plastic bottle for example can take up to 450 years to completely decompose! If we can limit our plastic consumption in something we do as frequently as eating, we can make a huge impact in decreasing the amount of plastic accumulating in our forests, waterways and oceans.
The Natural Step talks about an excess of society-made chemicals and compounds but also includes substances that nature has seen before but only in relatively small amounts... an example of this is methane produced by animal agriculture. If our farming methods are causing an unusual rise in those natural gases such as methane and CO2, this is also contrary to the Natural Step's principles.
When possible, shop plastic free
Plastic accumulation in our oceans is a major threat to this productive surface.
Consider a plant-based alternative
By choosing plant-based options and reducing your intake of animal products such as beef, you decrease the demand on land use surrounding the requirements to farm such animals. For example much of the deforestation of the Amazon Rainforest is largely attributed to the increased need to grow crops for animal feed.
By choosing plant-based options and reducing your intake of animal products such as fish and other seafood, you are decreasing the demand on the fishing industry to overfish certain populations of fish and all the bycatch (unintended species that get caught up in fishing nets etc) that comes with commercial fishing operations. Fishing nets are also a huge contributor to the accumulation of plastics in our oceans. 46% of the plastics caught up in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch can be linked back to the fishing industry Check out this National Geographical article about the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.
When possible, shop local
Research shows that local, independent businesses donate up to 24 times more per dollar of revenue to local charities than multinationals do. Independent businesses recirculate up to 4.6 times more revenue in the local economy than multinationals.They recirculate up to $63 of every $100 in revenue in the local economy, compared to $14 for multinationals.They produce up to 8.4 times more jobs/ft2 & up to 8.1 times more revenue/ft2 than multinationals and spend up to 31.4% of their revenue on B.C. products & services. It is predicted that even just a shift of 10% in B.C. consumer spending towards independent businesses would create 14,150 more jobs & keep $4.3 billion in the B.C. economy.