Our mission is to end single-use plastic pollution, and be a part of the transition towards a circular economy.
The mindless convenience of single-use plastic bags has come at a staggering cost. The world produces about 400 million tonnes of plastic waste every year. Single use plastics account for 50% of all plastic produced every year worldwide*, and the average person in the west consumes 100kg/220lbs of plastic annually.
Single-use plastic bags are catastrophic to the environment. Globally, we use an estimated 5 trillion plastic bags per year**. That’s 160,000 per second! On average, each plastic shopping bag is used for just 12 minutes, but these bags are thrown out at a rate of 2 million per minute. Almost all of them end up in landfills, are incinerated, or leak into the environment as trash. Each plastic bag will take up to 1000 years to degrade. Lined up, they would go around the world 7 times every hour.
At our current rate of consumption, the world’s oceans could contain more plastics than fish by 2050***.
Existing alternatives aren’t necessarily better, either: To match the total environmental impact of a single-use plastic bag, you’d need to use paper and biodegradable bags 43 times, thick reusable bags 54 times, and cotton bags a whopping 7,100 times. The estimate is even worse for organic cotton, because organic crop yields tend to be lower. You’d need to reuse your organic cotton bag over 20,000 times to have the same impact as a single-use plastic bag.
That’s a lot of shopping trips.
- Because the SmartBag uses a minimum number of materials, we’ve been able to maintain a small, close-knit supply chain. We’ve built long-term relationships with factories over a number of years and stay in close contact: We visit them, they visit us.
- We’re proud members of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a set of 17 different goals that collectively aim to combat poverty, inequality, environmental destruction, and more by 2030. Everless supports goals 11 (sustainable cities and communities) and 12 (responsible consumption and production). We’re required to annually report to the UN on our progress and are committed to continuous progress towards a zero waste future.
- We’re committed to ensuring that working conditions in our supply chain are safe, that workers are treated with respect and dignity, and that manufacturing processes are environmentally responsible. In addition to conducting our own audits, we accept third-party, mutually recognized standards to both reduce audit fatigue at factories and ensure legal, safe, humane, and ethical manufacturing practices. All Everless suppliers, including subcontractors, are required to fully comply with the laws, rules, and regulations of the countries in which they operate.
Producing a physical product has an unavoidable environmental impact. It’s been our ambition from the very beginning to work towards zero carbon emission, in material use, production, and product end of life. We’ve made two important design decisions to reduce our carbon footprint:
- We’ve designed the SmartBag to last, because products that last reduce overall consumption. We use an extremely thin, triple ripstop ultra high performance fabric (typically found in the extreme sports industry). This fabric maximizes the SmartBag’s durability and thereby minimizes its environmental impact.
- While it’s incredibly durable, the SmartBag is also designed to be as easy to recycle as possible. Many products consist of different, often blended materials, which makes recycling next to impossible. We’ve engineered the SmartBag almost entirely out of recyclable polyester. This mono materiality (using as few different materials as possible) makes the product much easier to recycle and further minimizes its footprint.
We’re taking consistent steps towards improving our processes, materials, supply partners, and factories. We’re small and we know we’ve still got work to do but we’re on track, actively working to reduce our footprint, and fully committed to a transparent and fair supply chain.
We’re working towards a fully circular, zero-waste model. To achieve this, we plan to create a mail-in system, so that damaged or used-up bags get fully recycled and never end up in landfills.