CFO World

Sheridan develops new operating model to address the conscious consumer

Sheridan has committed that 100 per cent of its consumer packaging will be reusable or recyclable by 2025

Sheridan has committed to new sustainability model and campaign, in an effort to address the more conscious consumer.

Sheridan has committed to 100 per cent of its consumer packaging being reusable or recyclable by 2025, and every new Sheridan product will be designed to consider end-of-life by 2025. The company’s product range will also increase to include more sustainable fibres and more responsible production processes in 2020.

To date, Sheridan has diverted over 40 tonnes of textiles from landfill and the business, and in August a tea towel made from these recycled yarns will be offered in stores.

When it comes to packaging, 100 tonnes of cardboard have been eliminated by the business over the past 12 months. Sheridan hopes to ultimately help drive greater accountability in the industry.

“We believe a tipping point has been reached in terms of global sustainability efforts, and enlightened brands are embracing positive change,” GM of marketing at Sheridan Australia, Renee Awadalla, told CMO.

"We launched a pilot in February to collect old linens for recycling. It ran for four weeks, and it was so successful, we are just keeping it going on an ongoing basis. We weren't sure if people would want to bring in their old sheets - it's a personal item, it's not like a coat - but we had a huge response.

“We are selling recycled tea towels in August called Sheridan Rethread to drive awareness of the recycling program, they are made from recycled fibres and are produced in the same factory where we are sending our bedlinen and towels that we are collecting."

Sheridan launched the in-store recycling program in February, which will be rolled out to all Sheridan stores by August. Since the launch, over 3150kg of pre-loved bed linen and towels have been donated by customers. Sheridan is now actively looking for new ways products and textiles that might have otherwise been considered waste can be diverted from landfill.

"To date, the program has welcomed donations from all of stores and as a result, we will be rolling the program out to all our outlet stores in August," Awadalla said.

The Manchester giant said it is actively working towards reducing the environmental impact in everything it does, from raw material and manufacturing process choices, to packaging.

"Sheridan has always been a category leader and sustainability has been intrinsic within our organisation for a long time. We are just now bringing the messaging to the forefront," Awadalla said.

"The whole business is working hard on many packaging initiatives. We have removed tonnes of cardboard already and are changing PVC to LDPE where possible, which is a recyclable plastic. So we are looking at all aspects where we can drive change.

“We are working with other retailers in the industry to share knowledge to improve sustainability, together we can make change.

“All of our research says climate change is a topic that impacts and interest everybody. It has expanded to be more than a millennial topic of interest. We feel we have a great story to tell, consumers are interested and want to know more. It’s time to stop talking about the issue and act. We wanted to be a brand that leads by example."

The move, which targets a set of key operational, environmental and social measures, coincides with the launch of a creative campaign in partnership with TBWA\Sydney.

"This campaign is running for the season [July to November] and we've got more marketing being released later in the year," Awadalla said. "We felt we had enough to talk about for this campaign to provoke action among consumers and our category and we will be continuing to set new goals and messaging around these initiatives."

The campaign ‘Make Tomorrow Beautiful’ transforms Sheridan’s luxury bed linen into highly detailed replicas of iconic natural landscapes. Each visual represents the diverse parts of nature, while demonstrating Sheridan’s commitment to creating products that sustain and support the beauty we see in nature. From Australia’s Great Dividing Range to the world’s perilous glaciers, the imagery of the campaign encourages people to think twice about the image itself and their shopping behaviours.

Sheridan is using traditional media, out-of-home, digital and social to push awareness.

"Not many homewares brands have taken a position on the topic in Australia. Lot of fashion retails are, and we would like to do the same for the homeware category," Awadalla added.  

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