As part of an industry that has a significant impact on the planet, Aspinal are fully engaged with our responsibility to reduce our environmental footprint. Through a journey of conscious initiatives, we have taken considered steps to help protect our surroundings; and we pledge to do more.
The natural landscape of Aspinal's countryside home, based within the National Park of the West Sussex Downs, is a constant inspiration behind our collections and a daily reminder of our responsibility to protect our precious planet.
We are especially proud of our Aspinal Bee Project established to help combat the decline in British bees by providing our local bee community with the ideal surroundings in which to thrive. We established our first five hives which are managed by a visiting bee keeper from our local branch of the Bee Keeper Association, with the plan to increase the number of beehives to 50 across West Sussex by the end of 2023.
Aspinal is a proud partner with the South Downs National Park Trust, a charity that works to protect the pollinators of the South Downs National Park through replenishing areas of rare chalk grasslands, one of the most endangered natural habitats in the UK. The grasslands of South Downs are home to an array of British butterflies, who thrive among the wildflowers, their numbers growing year on year thanks to dedicated work of the South Downs Trust.
Aspinal's local bees and wildlife from within the South Downs National Park were the inspiration behind the Bee and Daisy leather accessories. As a certified partner of the South Downs National Park Trust, we have pledged £4.50 from the sale of each Bee Keyring to the charity. This donation will aid the plantation of a local wildflower meadow within the grounds of our headquarters to help support the livelihood of the local bees and butterflies.
In early 2020, we began an initiative to reduce plastic in our supply chain, warehouse and customer-facing operations and pledge to remove all single-use plastic by the end of 2022. From the moment our products are designed, their journey through production to our warehouse, to our stores and finally our customers, each step on this product journey will be plastic-free.
We have researched and developed compostable, plastic-free bags to keep our products in pristine condition whilst they are shipped to our warehouse. These alternatives will be implemented business-wide before the end of 2021. We will swap bubble wrap and tape for recycled cardboard and paper to ensure increasingly sustainable packaging at each stage of our product journey.
We put what little waste we produce at head office to good use. In our own West Sussex community, we support Grayshott Pottery by donating all waste cardboard boxes to be reused by them, and leather offcuts are gifted to Hastilow Saddlery diverting them from landfill.
In addition to the sustainable sourcing of our raw materials, LGW certification of our factory and traceability of our product outlined on our Bee Aspinal: Product page, we avoid using air freight as much as possible to keep our carbon footprint to a minimum. For this reason, 95% of our products are transported by road or sea. In the rare instances that products have been air freighted, We pledge to work with our partners South Downs National Park Trust to offset remaining carbon emissions by plating at least 2,000 trees each Autumn.