Retailers pledge to steer clear of materials derived from endangered forests

15 retailers, including John Lewis, have agreed to steer clear of materials which derive from ancient and endangered forests in their textile and packaging supply chain.

The retailers and brands, which also include Zadig and Voltaire and C&A have signed the Pack4Good initiative, a scheme launched by not-for-profit environmental organisation Canopy.

The signatories of the initiative, which was signed on Earth Day, have also pledged to invest in low-carbon and circular fibre alternatives and advocate for global forest conservation and restoration.

Canopy said that 3.4 billion trees are cut down every year to make man-made cellulosic fibre (MMCF)-based textiles, like viscose and rayon, and for paper packaging. This is equivalent to two football pitches worth of forests being cut down every second.

John Lewis, which is the largest UK retailer to join the initiative, said it is always looking to cut carbon emissions by taking measures such as removing paper delivery notes from orders to save around 115 tonnes of material.

“We’re committed to protecting and restoring nature, and we constantly strive to reduce and improve our packaging,” said Marija Rompani, director of sustainability & ethics at the John Lewis Partnership. “Signing up to the Pack4Good initiative is a truly positive step forward on our journey to ensuring all our paper-based packaging is from a more sustainable source."

The additional signatories bring the total number of brands signed up for the initiative to 444, representing more than $249 billion in annual revenue.

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