FROM: SUSTAINABILITY SERIES
What it entails to be sustainable? For us, a small skincare-makers who do not produce massively, the ecological sustainability represents our very foundation.
4 MINUTE READ
Depletion of natural resources, materials, energy fuels, land, water, and so on is not acceptable in an environmentally sustainable business. Thus, the sustainable rate is the very foundation and goes hand in hand with the choice of more abundant resources instead of those scarce ones, to prevent environmental damage. It begins with the very first choice a business makes and ends with the very last one.
Take, as an example, raw ingredients and materials. Selecting responsibly sourced and organic ingredients can prevent environmental harm that is not immediately noticeable but in the long term can define the quality of the resources of future generations. Here is where the bees and pollinating insects represent a great example.
Pesticides can be fatal for bees, causing an insect apocalypse when used extensively. Just think about the irony, killed by the very plant meant to nourish you.
The tremendous increase in toxicity caused by pesticides goes hand in hand with a decrease in the number of bees and butterflies. Apart from preventing further spread of harmful pesticides, selecting products from organic farming by both companies and consumers prevents the additional impact of these toxic chemicals on both our environment and health.
Of course, it would be naive to think that a product free from pesticides is necessarily non-toxic. We have more than pesticides to worry about in our modern environment, which is the very reason why we, at Phaedra Botanicals, use only ingredients checked for external contaminants, such as heavy metals.
Similarly, giving preference to locally made glass from imported, even though the imported might be less costly, can be considered environmentally-friendly because it saves energy and fuel. In the case of Phaedra Botanicals, this environmentally-friendly decision goes hand in hand with safety.
Glass can contain potentially harmful impurities, such as lead and cadmium that can contaminate the contents of both beverage and skincare.
X-ray fluorescence spectrometry can yield these impurities and often did in the past when scholars subjected various containers to these tests, demonstrating concentrations higher than the levels determined safe.
It is one thing to review our raw ingredients for heavy metals and other impurities and another to fill in the pure ingredients in a bottle that might have these hazardous levels of contaminants and sabotage all our efforts. As such, the selection of responsible partnerships and cooperation with businesses that review heavy metal levels and subject their glass to safety analysis, becomes a decisive point, rather than "how will I profit the most in the minimum time."
That is, of course, not to say that business should not think about profit. Economic sustainability is a critical pillar of sustainability, and it requires that a company uses its resources efficiently and responsibly to make a profit and sustain its activities in the long term. How does this happen? Well naturally, higher expenses of sustainable business that selects responsibly sourced, analyzed raw ingredients and materials result in higher product cost.
In the upcoming weeks, we will be talking about topics, such as a circular economy in our Sustainability Series that relies directly on managing materials sustainably. Make sure you do not miss these contributions; they can assist you in understanding better the sustainable ways of life and how you can make a difference.
Author: Lucie S.V.
Photo credits: Wolfgang Hasselmann