The brands taking sustainability seriously

Going green is set to be big business in the coming years, thanks to huge demand for products that are also good for the planet. We speak to Ikea, Ren and Freitag about their approach to sustainability, and how to spot the brands that are simply jumping on the bandwagon

Thanks to what has become known as the Blue Planet effect over the past couple of years, brands are now being forced to respond to the demand for a greener consumer culture like never before. Each day seems to bring another news headline about big corporates doing their bit for the environment, whether it is Starbucks spearheading a £1 million initiative to boost paper cup recycling in the UK, or drinks giant Diageo’s announcement that it is removing plastic from multipacks of Guinness.

While brands finally acknowledging the havoc that is being wreaked on our planet can only be a good thing, whether their concerns are genuine or not is another question altogether. For every Patagonia, which is spearheading the slow fashion movement with its Worn Wear initiative, there is an environmental campaign clanger such as Robinsons Refresh’d ad from last year, which features a woman merrily sipping on one of the drinks in its new range with an expanding straw that ends up strangling a tree shortly after.