LifestyleGarden removes 565,000kg plastic from world’s waterways

by | Jun 18, 2024 | Features, News, Product News, Sustainability | 0 comments

Collecting plastic

In just a few years, ScanCom, including LifestyleGarden®’s collaboration with Plastic Bank® has made a huge impact on plastic pollution and communities across the globe.

A decision by LifestyleGarden® to partner with social enterprise Plastic Bank® in 2021 has since prevented more than 28,250,000 plastic bottles from entering the world’s oceans and rivers.

Firmly committed to Doing Business the Right Way, operating ethically and with minimal detriment to our planet, LifestyleGarden® has long strived to use the most responsible materials available to create beautiful outdoor living solutions that offer real longevity. By using the game-changing material Social Plastic® in its stunning collections, LifestyleGarden® has not only had an incredible impact on the environment but also helped to shape the futures of communities in Indonesia and help lift people out of poverty.

To date, LifestyleGarden®’s acquisition of post-consumer recycled Social Plastic® feedstock from Plastic Bank®, has impacted the lives of 956 people from 116 communities. It has also resulted in more than 565,000kg of plastic waste being extracted from the world’s waterways, particularly in those countries most affected by plastic pollution.

Turning plastic waste into something beautiful

The leading outdoor furniture brand’s journey started with the launch of its Nassau collection – powered by Social Plastic® for the 2022 season, a rainbow-bright selection of mix and match chairs, bistro and dining sets, made exclusively from Social Plastic®.

Every Nassau chair in the collection is made from the equivalent of 175 recycled plastic bottles, with each chair directly contributing to vulnerable coastal communities in Indonesia – where the current source material is collected – and the similar work Plastic Bank is doing in locations, such as the Philippines, Brazil, Egypt, Thailand and Cameroon.

Recognising the popularity of this range and the value that Social Plastic® would have within the retail setting, LifestyleGarden® set a target of five million plastic bottles to be recycled through its Social Plastic® range in 2022. Impressively, by 2024, with the range available in four colourways (Sage Green, Peony Pink, Honey Yellow, and White) and Social Plastic® also used in its showstopping Onyx collection, the number of plastic bottles LifestyleGarden®’s collaboration with PlasticBank® has saved now stands at more than five times its original target.

Making a difference

LifestyleGarden® was one of the first furniture brands in the UK to collaborate with Plastic Bank®, a for-profit enterprise that highlights the value in plastic and uses it as a global resource to end poverty. Through the creation of ethical recycling ecosystems, Plastic Bank® incentivises coastal communities to gather used plastic, and by monetising this waste, helps to improve people’s standard of living.

Locals receive a premium for the materials they collect, which helps them provide basic family necessities, such as groceries, school tuition, internet access, health insurance, and cooking fuel. The collected plastic waste is washed, flaked, and goes through a recycling process, where they are then pelletised and integrated into products and packaging as part of a closed-loop supply chain.

Using Plastic Bank’s Alchemy™ blockchain platform, which secures the entire transaction and provides real-time data visualisation, LifestyleGarden® is also able to track the lifecycle of every Social Plastic® product. This information has been continually shared with its retail customers and consumers to help paint a detailed picture of the plastic crisis and how little steps can make a huge difference to vulnerable communities, as well as the planet.

The beauty of this data is that it is helping retailers to educate their customers at the point of sale, generating important conversations and broadening the appeal to a new generation of consumers that are asking more questions, have higher expectations and demand more transparency from producers. Having this information readily available is priceless. From the names of the collectors, to how their lives have changed as a result of their work with Plastic Bank®, this is material with a real soul and the ability to change lives in a tangible way.

Paul Cohen, Sales Director at LifestyleGarden® said: “When we first collaborated with Plastic Bank® to release our Nassau – Powered by Social Plastic® offering, it felt like the culmination of everything we had been working towards as a responsible manufacturer. It was an exciting new chapter for us, following on from the incredible impact we were already making with our DuraOcean® chair. We are incredibly proud to have introduced this material innovation to our industry and to help effect change with every item we create and sell. The ease of this partnership and the success it is having clearly demonstrates that using responsibly-sourced material really shouldn’t be that difficult. It is imperative that manufacturers take action, not just because it looks good and ticks a box but because change is needed and it doesn’t have to be that hard.

“This is about so much more than plastic pollution. LifestyleGarden® is committed to making the world a better place, and social responsibility forms a big part of that, alongside supporting the circular economy, using responsibly sourced, honest materials, and showcasing complete transparency regarding our supply chain and impact on the environment. We are dedicated to this journey, it’s part of our DNA, and long may groundbreaking materials like Social Plastic® be part of our story.”

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