CLARITY-The Soap Co., one of the UK’s foremost social enterprises creating employment for blind and disabled people, has been awarded The Planet Mark™ for demonstrating its commitment to cutting its carbon footprint year-on-year.
(Caption: Members of the Clarity-The Soap Co. team, with front left crouching Steve Malkin, founder of The Planet Mark™, back left standing, Yemi Onabolu, sales administrator and Green Team member at CLARITY-The Soap Co, and right crouching, Camilla Marcus-Dew, head of Commercial and Green Team)
CLARITY is the UK’s oldest social enterprise and has produced soap for 80 years. 80% of its staff are visually impaired, disabled or otherwise disadvantaged. The Soap Co. is Clarity’s premium luxury brand first launched in 2015. This is the first year the charity has been awarded The Planet Mark™.
Certification was awarded based on CLARITY-The Soap Co.’s commitment to reduce its carbon emissions by at least 5% over the next 12 months.
The carbon footprint of CLARITY-The Soap Co. in its first reporting period (April 2016- March 2017) was 96.6 tCO2e. This was based on the energy, water and waste associated with its business operations across four sites in the UK, including its head office and main factory in East London, its luxury soap factory in Keswick, as well as offices in Portsmouth and Scotland.
The Planet Mark™ recognises’s CLARITY-The Soap Co.’s good practice in sustainability, including:
- measuring carbon emissions from electricity, natural gas, waste and water
- committing to a target to reduce emissions by 5% annually
- investing in the Eden Project to support education on climate change
- storing 260 tCO2e by protecting one acre of endangered rainforest through the charity
- committing to engage employees and suppliers to drive improvements.
Holders of The Planet Mark™ have a minimum requirement to reduce their carbon emissions by 2.5% per year.
CLARITY-The Soap Co. has demonstrated that plans are in place to reduce emissions across the organisation over the next year. These include creating a ‘Green Team’ to find ways to make savings and hit sustainability targets, streamlining the charity’s manufacturing process to encourage efficiency and reduced wastage, and upping its efforts to reduce, reuse and recycle cardboard and other outer packaging.
For new product ranges, recycled and recyclable materials will be used for the packaging to minimise the amount of carbon emissions created, CLARITY-The Soap Co. said.
The charity is also investigating the installation of solar panels on the roof of the factory to allow for the incorporation of renewable energy into the organisation’s energy supply, reducing emissions and promoting sustainability.