What we have stopped doing is as important as what we have started to do. Understanding why helps navigate our new collection.
No palm oil
First, we stopped using palm oil in our candle wax blend because even though palm is the most land-efficient oil crop on earth and we used RSPO-certified palm oil (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil), we grew increasingly uncomfortable about the deforestation being reported in Indonesia and Malaysia, the source of our wax. We also belatedly discovered there are four grades of RSPO certification, yet only two that guarantee 100% responsibly-sourced palm oil. Due to our own previous lack of knowledge, we hadn’t always been buying the right two. If that wasn’t reason enough, the immense distance from the equator to Denmark, combined with the obvious lack of palm trees growing here in Scandinavia also seemed to be telling us something.
Second, we stopped using beeswax in our hand creams because even though it is excellent for moisturisation of the skin, and our beeswax was a byproduct of the honey-making industry where the bees are not harmed during the process, strictly speaking, beeswax is an animal-created product that humans are exploiting and is therefore not vegan.
No virgin plastic
Third, we stopped using virgin plastic for our bottles because even though we produced them locally here in Denmark, and therefore minimised emissions, that virgin plastic was an oil derivative which has an incremental cost of extraction and production compared to renewably-farmed bioplastics or recycled plastic (rPET) with a lower carbon footprint. We also removed the virgin plastic cellophane wrapping from all our products because, while it looks more fancy and helps protect the packaging, it’s just not essential. (*we’re still not quite there yet on caps, pumps and safety stickers, but we’re working on it).
Fourth, we stopped using paraffin in our candle wax blend because even though it’s probably the world’s most popular wax base, despite investing in a ‘food-grade’ product standard (yes, paraffin wax can be found on fruit, vegetables, candy, ice cream, chocolate…), and despite previously justifying our choice as a byproduct of an existing industry with no incremental environmental impact, we simply came to the conclusion that we could no longer reconcile our own logic when that existing industry – big oil – has a tremendous responsibility for the climate change we all experience today and yet still shows few signs of wanting to change.
Photo: Philip Ørneborg