UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man

Who is involved?

Our list of project partners is growing rapidly and encompasses businesses, schools, charities and community groups across the Island.


Zurich International
Zurich International

Zurich International is headquartered in the Isle of Man and has more than 300 employees. It is part of the Zurich Insurance Group, offering life insurance, investment and protection solutions throughout the world.

The company has a new office on the outskirts of Douglas, where energy saving is a key design feature. It uses timed LED lights, temperature controlled workspaces and on demand heated water via automatic taps.

Zurich International became the first Isle of Man business to switch to using compostable cups in vending machines through a partnership with Mannvend. The company is committed to minimizing their environmental footprint and apply a continuous improvement approach in reducing use of plastics and paper waste where possible.

Employees are involved in projects to improve the Island’s environment and encourage others to go out and enjoy it. These include carrying out work over several years at Archallagan Forest and adding a nature trail to the Curraghs Wildlife Park.

The workforce have spent thousands of hours working on community activities such as Beach Buddies’ beach cleans, lane cleaning, the Parish Walk and 1st Onchan Guides. Zurich International have a pledge signed to allow colleagues one day of volunteering at the company’s expense.

Zurich International is also a major supporter of Junior Achievement where they provide funding for the Junior School Programme Manager, and sponsorship of the ‘Learn to Earn’ programme.

The partnership with Junior Achievement aids in providing volunteers for the programme deliveries and are further committed to supporting the youth in the community.

In addition Zurich International also have a Manx registered charity, the Zurich Financial Services (Isle of Man) Charity Fund which has donated more than £40,000 to local charities in 2018.

Dee & Bees Wax Wraps
Dee & Bee's Wax Wraps

Dee and Bee’s Wax Wraps is an Isle of Man company that provides a plastic-free and reusable alternative to cling film for wrapping foods.
The company’s ethos is to reduce the amount of plastic purchased and consumed.
It purchases all its beeswax from Isle of Man producers and some of its fabric from local shops. Fabric offcuts are reused by a local school or for cleaning equipment, and then as home-made firelighters.
Wax wraps are packaged in recycled card and any bags used are paper.
Bronnie Ward, who founded the company with Debbie Carcas, is a schoolteacher who teaches about sustainability and its importance in our UNESCO Biosphere.


Gravity is established via Junior Achievement's companies programme. It creates and sells bamboo toothbrushes as an alternative to plastic and to reduce plastic in the Island's environment.

It intends to plant a tree in the Isle of Man for every 50 toothbrushes sold.

Turning to community involvement, it promoted local talent at a fund-raising 'Night with the Stars' and raised funds at 'Light the Night', held at Kirk Braddan Church.

Pepsi Max Bowl
Pepsi Max Bowl

The Pepsi Max Bowl is a family leisure centre offering bowling, a diner, bar and play area in Ramsey.

The attraction is run as a social enterprise and is a living wage employer. Several directors are volunteers.

It is always seeking ways to reduce its carbon footprint and support the local community.
It has stopped selling soft drinks in plastic bottles and those served to children in the diner are served in reusable beakers, while adults’ drinks are served in coated paper cups.

Cutlery is now metal rather than plastic. It discourages the use of straws by placing them behind the counter and provides only biodegradable straws, when they are requested.

Takeaway coffee is served in biodegradable cups and takeaway food in coated recycled cardboard.

It replaced its heaters with more energy efficient versions in 2017.

The venue donates space to the Manx Wildlife Trust to highlight its work and will launch a scheme to encourage customers to clean Ramsey’s beach, assisting Beach Buddies.

Mannin Group LTD
Mannin Group LTD

The Mannin Group LTD is a long-established Manx family business employing around 26 people on the Island at its modern headquarters in Cronkbourne. You may know them from their well-known magazine brands – Manxlife and Business365 – or as one of the islands largest print companies, creating many products including banners and signs.

The groups Manxlife magazine takes pride in promoting local wildlife, recycling, community projects and activities, and the company ensures that materials are sources locally when possible and that the majority of its products are printed on recycled paper.

In addition to recycling all paper and metal in the office, in 2018, the Mannin group removed all single use plastic cups from their premises. In addition, the Mannin group are currently working closely with other local businesses on an exciting project to further minimise the use of single use plastic cups within the commercial sector.

Noa Bakehouse
Noa Bakehouse

Noa Bakehouse is an artisan sourdough baker, coffee roaster and café in the heart of the Isle of Man’s capital, Douglas.

Noa uses local produce, whenever possible, and promotes a buy local message. Among its chief suppliers are UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man Partners Laxey Glen Mills and Isle of Man Creamery.

When supplying supermarkets, it limits the products it puts onto the shelves to reduce food waste, although this has potential to mean fewer sales.

In 2019, Noa will cease to use plastic in its packaging entirely, replacing it with waxed paper.
Noa celebrates local culture and heritage. Its new bread range will be called Arran, Manx for bread.

It has hosted classes with Manx National Heritage celebrating the local traditions of bread-making.

A community hub, the café hosts concerts and performances by local authors, musicians and poets, displays work by local artists and is home to events such as mindfulness and drawing classes.

Julie Parys, UI/UX Designer
Julie Parys, UI/UX Designer

Julie Parys, UI/UX Designer designs branding, websites and other digital content and is based in Douglas.

She aims to work 100% digital. Julie Parys, UI/UX Designer limits her transport to reduce her carbon footprint and recycles as much as possible.

Julie Parys, UI/UX Designer supported Manx Basking Shark Watch by designing its website and branding for free. She wants to expand on the Manx Basking Shark Watch website with data visualisation and offers similar services to other conservation organisations.

Surfside Holiday Limited
Surfside Holiday Cottage

Surfside Holiday Limited provides self-catering tourist accommodation located in Port Erin.

It promotes recycling of waste to its guests by enabling them to utilise the islands recycling efforts. The business uses recycled domestic products where possible and cleans the cottage with eco-friendly detergents.

Surfside Holiday Limited reduces its paper use by preferring utilisation of electronic and social media.

The business pursues a plastic reduction policy wherever possible, supporting the Islands’ initiative to reduce single use plastics.

Surfside Holiday Limited supports cultural and heritage initiatives by promoting them. The directors continue to support cultural and heritage initiatives in their leisure time as they are members of the Friends of Manx National Heritage, Manx Wildlife Trust, The Erin Arts Centre and Peel Centenary Centre and they share the events and experiences with guests and prospective guests.

Skywind Group
Skywind Group

Skywind Group is a well-established global pioneer of cutting-edge games content and infrastructure. Its headquarters are in Douglas, Isle of Man.

The company strives to effectively facilitate business actions that reflect the moral philosophy and values of Skywind Group and are committed to promoting greater environmental responsibility and sustainability.

The company prefers to work with environmentally-conscious suppliers and distributors and endeavours to support local and fair trade producers wherever possible by buying their products.

The company has various recycling schemes in its offices. To reduce waste it looks at optimising its products life cycles by focusing on better product quality and more energy efficient technology.

The company uses energy efficient compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs) and light-emitting diodes (LED), as well as motion detectors to reduce unnecessary lighting in many of its offices. Skylights and natural daylight decrease the use of artificial light further.

As part of their corporate social responsibility strategy, employees are motivated, educated and incentivised to live and work in a sustainable manner by participating in environment related charity causes.

Skywind Group aims to generate positive, lasting change in our local communities through the establishment of long term strategic partnerships, volunteerism and philanthropic initiatives. The company is actively involved with a multitude of charity, non-profit and community engagement projects. Outreach support is offered via grant making, donations, fundraising, volunteering initiatives, promotional activities and the provision of products and/or services.

The company donates working surplus products and redundant equipment to non-profit organisations, e.g. schools, community groups and charities.

Skywind Group supports young people through internships and quality work experience.

Skywind Group celebrates local heritage and raises awareness of environmental and community issues through sponsorship initiatives and promotional activity on its social media platforms. The company also utilises the online giving platform Pass it Forward (https://www.passitforward.com) to safely manage and promote its philanthropy and volunteering activity.

Seven Kingdom Distillery
Seven Kingdom Distillery

Seven Kingdom Distillery is a distillery, bar and restaurant based in Douglas.

The company supports the local economy by buying seasonal produce for both the bar and restaurant. The company also collaborates with many other businesses on the Island (including other Biosphere partners, such as the Foraging Vintners). The first gin to be created on the Island in recent times is the company’s Douglas Dry Gin, this includes local ingredients, for example, Manx Gorse.

Seven Kingdom Distillery supports the community by hosting charitable events and donating products or experiences to charities and auctions. In 2017 the company created a Pink Gin. Profits from the sale of the gin were donated to the Breast Cancer Awareness charity.

The company sponsors local athletes in events on and off the island. It also produced a TT branded vodka for TT 2018.

Seven Kingdom Distillery recycles as much waste as possible. It encourages its customers to return bottles by giving discounts. The company has implemented a number of strategies to minimise the use of plastics.

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Sign up to the UNESCO Biosphere ISLE OF MAN pledge

UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man is open to everyone. You are welcome to be involved, providing you support the principles outlined in The Biosphere Isle of Man Pledge. This is the pledge that our partners have signed up to. Encapsulating the aims of the project, this is the Pledge that all our partners sign up to.

If you are interested in being involved as a business, you’ll find more information about the benefits of being a partner and how it all works in the Project Partners Guidelines for Businesses and also for Schools, Community Groups and Charities.

To apply to become a Partner and Supporter of UBIOM, please fill in this application form, and help us to tell others what you are so proud of, and keep us updated about how you will get even better.

Download the UNESCO Biosphere Isle of Man Pledge