FICC Patron Smurfit Kappa hosts Better Planet Packaging Day 2019

Today, Smurfit Kappa will host a global Better Planet Packaging Day across 28 Experience Centres around the world. At this event, their aim is to inspire customers with lectures, discussions and real action to begin a journey to create sustainable packaging solutions.

Winter is not far away on the shores of Brittany but Irish solo sailor Tom Dolan has been training hard on his adopted home waters in preparation for the 2020 Figaro season.

As he marks “Better Planet Packaging Day” today Dolan says he will maintain his zero packaging waste policy on board his boat during the 2020 season and will be encouraging  his friends and rivals to do the same.

“It is a such a little thing in terms of the time to make a practical change but it’s an important message to everyone where I race and at home in Ireland. Through the 2019 season I only carried re-usable bottles for my water on board. When I buy food to take with me I use items with paper based packaging only and I re-pack everything into my own re-usable boxes. Yes, it’s a pain when you are tired at the end of a leg to empty and clean my stuff but it is vital we all make a little effort. I’d really encourage crews at home in Ireland to lead by example.” Says Dolan.

“The ocean is our playing field and unfortunately the most common thing that we see strewn across it is plastic waste. Week in week out in floats past us. It just can’t go on”.

Sailing into Wellness

Tom has also plans to continue as an ambassador for Irish charity Sailing into Wellness next season after Autumn storms put paid to his plans to bring his Beneteau Figaro 3 to his native Island to raise funds for the organisation which uses sailing to help individuals with mental health and addiction problems.

“It was a pity that I I could not bring the boat across in October as planned. It would have been crazy to try in such weather conditions. But I did come and do a great day of coaching with John and the crew of Hot Cookie, a Sun Fast 3600, and they made a very generous donation to Sailing into Wellness. We know that money has been put to excellent use for a day’s sailing for guys and girls who are less fortunate than I am and are trying to get themselves back on track.”

Winter Training

Before his boat comes out the water for a winter’s work, Tom has been busy speed testing new sail shapes and set ups with French sail maker Technique Voile.

“We have been out training every week and changed a good few things for the better. At the moment they are the only loft working like this to try and be ahead for next season. We have two of us on the water testing, tuning and photographing the prototype sails , then the guys bring the sails back to the loft, modify them a bit and we test again. It takes a while but I am sure we have made important advances.”

Transat AG2R La Mondiale

Tom will also spend the winter months busily searching for additional funding in order to compete in next years  two handed Transatlantic race from Brittany to Saint Barth’s. It will be the first full scale competitive Transatlantic for the new Beneteau Figaro 3 and Dolan aims to sail with his good friend Francois Jambou who has just won the Mini Transat, the class in which Dolan cut his teeth.

“I believe this is a great opportunity for us. I have been friends with Francois for a good few years, we have done a number of Mini Fastnet races together, finishing twice on the podium and I also work with him in our coaching business a lot. I knew he had the potential to win the Mini and think we would combine to form a great partnership. Now all we need to do is find the budget.”  Dolan concludes.

For media requests, please contact Andi Robertson



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