Have a Glean over Green Bean Zines!

Introducing Hannah, founder of Green Bean Zines!

Hannah started her not-for profit business because she wanted to educate people about the environment and the climate crisis in an accessible way. She makes ‘zines’ (a small-circulation, self-published magazine) about the challenges facing our environment across the globe and how activists are confronting those challenges. She has already published three zines and is currently working on her fourth, which is about the political power of the oil industry and the harm it has caused to humans and nature all over the planet. Hannah also donates all her profits to good causes.

“To me, sustainability means making the ethical choices you are personally capable of making for the planet. For example: I can afford to buy secondhand or sustainably made clothes, so I source my wardrobe almost entirely secondhand and only (occasionally) buy new clothing from ethical UK-based businesses. I’ve also been a pescatarian for the last 9 years, and I’ve recently been trying to eat vegan 80-ish% of the time. However, nobody is perfect, and it can also be extremely hard to make sustainable choices when there is a cost-of-living crisis. Individual actions aren’t enough to stop the climate crisis so we also need political action on a global level, but if you have the power and privilege to question your consumption and who you give money to, you should!”

What sort of things do you need to consider to ensure your business is sustainable?

“My business is nearly 100% plastic free – the only little bit being bubble wrap in the jiffy bags I buy to ship orders, though most of my sales are in-person anyway. I also have my zines printed on recycled paper and the zines themselves are recyclable. When I go to markets all of the artwork on my table – little description cards, posters etc. are made from used paper like cereal boxes, and I always travel by public transport – partially because I don’t yet know how to drive!”

What is your favourite thing about running your business?

“I love engaging with people, I love talking to them about the environment, it helps me feel less hopeless about the climate crisis. I also love the feeling of people reading my work and being inspired by my words. I love travelling to different markets all over the UK and getting to discover the culture and the people in each city I visit – most people you meet are so friendly and eager to tell you exactly what’s good where they live. It’s also nice donating all of my profit to good causes – such as Medical Aid for Palestine.”

What do you love about Birmingham?

“The culture! There’s always something happening, something to see or do or eat… Art (of all forms) is so important in my opinion – it’s how we stay connected and in community with each other. I also love love love the word “bab” and “alright bab” and “thanks bab” have become a part of my lexicon since moving here. The Brummies are a very friendly people. Finally – and this is probably controversial – but as a train travel enthusiast, I love West Midlands Railway. Honestly one of the elite tier operators in the UK in my opinion. There are three stations all within a fifteen minute walk from my house, it’s great.”

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *