We have gathered some tips, ideas and inspiration for ways you can upcycle, recycle and greenify you day. And hey, you can also catch some awesome eco-friendly knowledge.
Feel like going green?
Seagrass basket / Available soon
5 easy ways to a greener kitchen
Do you have an appetite for recycling and are you up for an eco-friendly kitchen?
1. Upcycle tin cans into something useful! See our tutorial below.
2. Reduce food waste, be creative!
3. Change the drinks but reuse the straws.
4. Use a plastic free and eco-friendly washing-up brush.
5. Brew your tea with a long-lasting tea egg (single-use tea bags are often sealed with micro plastic).
Recycling plastic is fantastic
Plastic waste is a major problem for our planet. Plastic pollution causes harm to humans, animals and plants through toxic pollutants. It can take hundreds or even thousands of years for plastic to break down, so the environmental damage is long-lasting.
Still, plastic is widely used for a reason. Plastic is a versatile material: it’s lightweight, durable, great for protecting perishable food and can be used for all kinds of nice and need-to-have things. However, we want to be clever about how we use plastic. We want to reduce the amount we use and use a lot more recycled plastic.
A plastic pledge
And it’s not just talk and no action. We want to do our part to pass on a better future and have made a pledge to deliver on the Paris Agreement, an international treaty on climate change. One way we will do this is cutting 50% of all plastic products by 2025. And because recycling plastic feels fantastic, we have made a commitment to use 50% recycled plastic in our plastic products by the year 2025, saving at least 5,000 tons of plastic per year from 2026.
And there is more! Did you know that we have a partnership with the Danish NGO, Plastic Change, where we pledge to minimize our use of plastic in favour of renewable materials (like wood, paper, bamboo, and straw) and easily recyclable materials (e.g., metal and glass)?
Now we of course hope that when you buy one of our products, you’ll enjoy it for a long time. And if you for some reason decide to kiss it goodbye, we hope you’ll discard and recycle it the right way. To help you with this, recycling categories will be embedded on all our plastic products from spring 2022.
Upcycle you tin cans!
If recycling feels good, upcycling feels amazing.
Follow our step-by-step instructions below and give it a go.
You can do it
- 1. Remove the lid from the tin can.
- 2. Soak the can in warm water to clean it (you might need elbow grease).
- 3. Scrub the can with steel wool to remove the paper label.
- 4. Fetch a paintbrush and your favourite acrylic colours (it’s time to get creative!)
- 5. Spray your decorated can with clear acrylic varnish when the paint is dry.
What to use your tin cans for
1. Use it as an original organiser for your cotton pads.
2. Use it as practical utensil caddy for your pencils.
3. Use it as a decorative plant pot for your herbs to shine
4. Use it as a creative candle holder.
Do you think outside the trash, and do you think upcycling is cool? Share an upcycling idea with us. We love to get inspired!
We got a green license!
A green scene – the wonders of wood
Trees provide brilliant benefits for both humans and the environment. Trees are the lungs of our planet. Well managed forests protect biodiversity and remove excess carbon dioxide from our atmosphere and convert it into oxygen. Trees are vital to us in so many ways.
Trees also offer us great products. Because wood is a wonderful material. It’s renewable, biodegradable, long-lasting and ages beautifully. As a global retailer we both have a responsibility and an opportunity to positively influence how wood is sourced.
A green guarantee
We want you to know that when you buy one of our paper products or one of our wooden items it has been produced with respect to ethical, environmental, and social standards. All of our paper products and the majority of our wooden products have the little FSC® tree logo. This is your guarantee of sustainable forestry. By 2022, all our wooden products will come from well-managed FSC-certified forests and other controlled sources.
Forests for everyone
FSC stands for ‘Forest Stewardship Council’ and is an international, non-profit organisation that is dedicated to secure and promote responsible management of the world’s forests. The FSC label ensures that the trees that are harvested are replaced or allowed to regenerate naturally. FSC also has a strong focus on protecting the people working in the forests and the wildlife that calls the forest their home.
Look for the FSC logo every time you buy a wooden product, and help make sure there are forests for everyone forever.
Explore a world of materials
Resources can be renewable, durable, recyclable and many other things. Curious about the materials we use?
The planet means the world to us
Sustainability is so many things. One of them is that we need to live our lives in a way, so future generations do not suffer. Protecting biodiversity and respecting our common resources is vital for all of us to be able to live a good life.
We want to offer you extraordinary products, but we also want to offer you eco-friendly choices. The world has limited reserves and we feel responsible for taking care of the resources we all share. Therefore, we have embarked on a green journey together with our products.
A matter of material
The materials that our products are made of is one stop on our green journey. We prefer seagrass, wheat straw, wood, bamboo, and other naturally grown resources because they’re renewable, and therefore more eco-friendly. Easily recyclable materials such as glass and stainless steel are other sweet deals because they’re circular materials that can be endlessly reused.
We say no to single use
You’ll be happy to hear that a farewell to single use is on top of our green agenda. We are phasing out disposable and single-use products and replacing them with reusable alternatives. Thus, one of our green targets is a 50% reduction of single-use products by 2025. Accordingly, we will have around 34 million less single-use products by 2026.
And we have our eyes on all kinds of everyday essentials that we tend to use only one time.
Today cotton pads, cottonbuds, food wrap, coffee filters, baking liners (and many more) are part of our reusable assortment. Every time we reuse a product, we prevent waste creation. At the same time, we respect the resources that have already been used in the creation of the product, and the working hours and transportation to bring it home to you.
Thus, the best thing you really can do if you want to respect the planet’s resources is to use our products for a long time.
Got a sustainability questions for us?
Maybe you can find the answer below in our Q&A
Do you have any eco-friendly products?
Yes, we have many new eco-friendly products each month. All our paper and most of our wood products come from sustainable forests. This is guaranteed by the FSC-logo, a small tree on the packaging. We are also increasing the number of products made from recycled and renewable materials and materials that can be easily recycled. You can also find many alternatives to single-use plastic items in our stores. But no matter what you buy – you can be sure that we are doing our best to make every single product eco-friendly.
Do you have any targets on sustainability?
Yes, we have ambitious sustainability targets for the years 2022 and 2025. For example, by 2022, we want to reduce our plastic packaging materials by 20 %. Within this year we also want to achieve at least 50 % renewable energy in our warehouses, stores, and offices. By 2025, we want to use 50 % less plastics than we do today. Of the remaining products, at least 50 % should be made of recycled plastics. That means, that at least half of our plastic products will be made from plastic waste in 2025. We also aim to reduce our single-use products by 50% by 2025.
You can read about these targets and many more here: https://flyingtiger.com/pages/sustainability
Why do you sell plastic products?
Plastic is a good material in many ways. It is light-weight, durable and can be used for many different things. However, we want to reduce the volume we use and only use it wisely when we do. We are working to replace a large volume of plastic products with more eco-friendly materials and have a strategic target to reduce our plastic products by 50% by 2025. We also have a target for 50% of the remaining plastic to be recycled plastic by 2025.
What are you doing about the sustainability of your packaging?
We are working to reduce the amount of plastic in our packaging. We have a goal to reduce the volume of plastic in our packaging by 20% by 2022. However, we expect to meet this target well ahead of schedule. In almost all these cases, the packaging is replaced with paper or cardboard which is biodegradable and requires considerably lower greenhouse gas emissions to produce.
Why do you sell so many disposable products?
Reducing our usage of single-use products is a big area of focus for us. Between 2019 and 2025 we aim to reduce the number of single-use products we sell by 50%, in 2020 we were already over 10% of the way there. This target has resulted in some amazing new products, from reusable baking paper to beeswax food wrap to rechargeable batteries.
There are some items it is very difficult to make multiple use, such as plasters/band-aids however, we hope that by 2025 the remaining single-use products will be made of eco-friendly materials or will be entirely essential products (ideally also made of eco-friendly materials).
Why do you use plastic carrier bags?
We focus on making our plastic bags as eco-friendly as possible. In 2021 we are phasing in new carrier bags made from 100% recycled plastic bottles, that are 100% recyclable and highly durable. We also offer an amazing range of multi-use cotton tote bags that we encourage customers to use.
Why don’t you sell bioplastics?
Bioplastics is a term that describes many different types of plastics. All these have in common that they are not made from fossil fuel oil. Instead, they are produced by using oil from, for example sugarcane, which grows on fields. However, there are strong disadvantages. Growing sugarcane for producing plastic products takes away land that could be used to grow food. Also, it is often unclear in which waste bin bioplastics should be thrown. Some kinds are like normal plastics and should therefore be thrown in the plastic waste. Other kinds should be industrially composted, meaning that they should be thrown away together with organic waste. As a result, it is very hard to correctly throw away bioplastics. However, if it ends up in the wrong waste bin the material can have bad impacts for our recycling systems. Therefore, we have decided to stop using bioplastic and instead focus on a general reduction in plastic products.
Is any of your plastic compostable?
Biodegradable/compostable plastics means plastic which will degrade or compost just like food does. However, the difference to food is that these kinds of plastic need very special conditions to compost. Currently, only few industrial waste plants can meet these conditions. As a result, these types of plastics are often not handled correctly in the waste system. Therefore, we have decided not to use biodegradable or compostable plastics.
What are you doing about the climate?
We are worried about climate change. And we want to help avoid its serious consequences for the planet and people. Therefore, we aim to do our best to minimize our carbon emissions. We try to do this in every step of creating and selling our products and we are doing a lot. You can read more on our website: https://flyingtiger.com/pages/sustainability.
Why do you ship so many products from China instead of sourcing from Europe?
In transportation, we want to reduce our emissions by choosing eco-friendly modes of transport whenever possible. Currently, we are using ships for about 70% of our transports which have considerably lower emissions per kilometre compared to road freight. When we look at the greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation of our products from China and from Europe, the picture isn’t so black and white. Some of our goods with limited road transport prior to shipping in China and then limited road transport upon arrival in Europe have lower emissions than some of our goods transported long distances across Europe. It is also important to consider that often raw materials are produced in Asia and shipped to European factories for production. We believe overall the best option is for us to support the sustainable transition of the transportation methods we already use.
Do you consider sustainability in the operational side of your stores?
Yes, we do. Our store furniture is made from (FSC certified) wood and metal and comes in pallet sizes to optimize transportation. It is both highly durable, but also fully recyclable. The paper which we use in our stores comes from sustainable forestry (FSC certified), so wrapping paper and receipts are eco-friendly. But this is just a couple of our considerations, find out more here: https://viewer.ipaper.io/flying-tiger/corporate/annual-report-2020/?page=34
Are your wood and paper products eco-friendly?
Wood and paper are fantastic materials because they grow naturally and can be recycled. We want to do all we can do keep forests in a good shape. Therefore, we joined the FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) in 2017. In 2020, 79% of our wood and paper products were made from FSC certified wood and paper and we aim to reach 100% by 2022. You will notice their tree icon on most of our wooden and on all paper products. This tree guarantees our customers that the product comes from sustainable forests. It shows that the management of the forest treats people, animals, and the environment well. The tree symbol also proves that forest workers receive proper training, enjoy good health and safety conditions, and are compensated with fair wages.
What does the FSC label stand for?
The Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) label, which is a small tree symbol, ensures the wood or paper in that product is sourced in accordance with the FSC’s ten principles, which cover social and environmental areas. It ensures the sourcing of these items didn’t harm the world’s forests, supported the protected of the eco-systems surrounding forests and protected the social and environmental conditions of workers and local communities, including the land rights of indigenous communities. You can read more about the FSC principles here https://www.fsc-uk.org//en-uk/about-fsc/what-is-fsc/fsc-principles.
How do you ensure the palm oil in your food products is responsibly sourced?
In 2020, we joined the Round Table on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) supporting their work to improve the palm oil industry. Most of our products containing palm oil have RSPO certified palm oil and we aim to reach 100% by 2022. Switching from palm oil to other alternatives can cause greater demand on other environmental resources, instead we think it is a better option to improve the sustainability of the palm oil industry.
How do you ensure that factories you work with have good practices, including fair worker conditions?
We have a social compliance process, which aims to ensure that factories we work with can meet our requirements, and that the people producing our products are treated with respect and provided with fair and safe working conditions. This process involves a Code of Conduct, factory audits and a process for improvements and remediation. You can read more about our extensive social compliance process here https://flyingtiger.com/pages/sustainability or in our annual report: https://viewer.ipaper.io/flying-tiger/corporate/annual-report-2020/?page=22 (page 31, 33 and 35).
How do you improve the conditions in your supply chain?
Our social compliance process has an improvement process for any factories that are not A-rated (meaning that they have no areas of improvement). These factories are given a corrective action plan which they must implement, and they are re-audited to check this happens. We also have, what we call a supplier academy, which runs frequent training sessions on topics such as sustainability, compliance, and quality for our suppliers! We are also working on a collaboration with an NGO called NEST, to enhance the conditions for Homeworkers (handcraft workers operating out of their homes). You can read about all of these activities in our annual report here: https://viewer.ipaper.io/flying-tiger/corporate/annual-report-2020/?page=22