Bambooka Ethical Policy
Bambooka is a progressive volunteer-run fashion brand: a not-for-profit outfit, making desirable shades from sustainable materials, and investing 100% of our profits directly into our partner charities. Buy a pair of Bambookas, and you’re helping ordinary people in rural South Africa escape poverty and build a better life with PEPE (People Empowered Preserved Earth). And […]
Bambooka is a progressive volunteer-run fashion brand: a not-for-profit outfit, making desirable shades from sustainable materials, and investing 100% of our profits directly into our partner charities. Buy a pair of Bambookas, and you’re helping ordinary people in rural South Africa escape poverty and build a better life with PEPE (People Empowered Preserved Earth). And what’s more, you’re helping Vision Aid Overseas provide simple but life-changing eye care across the world.
Unlike our shades, Bambooka didn’t come perfect out of the box. We had a journey to get where we are today.
RECYCLING IS AT THE HEART OF OUR ETHICAL & SUSTAINABLE SUNGLASSES POLICY
Reducing our footprint on the planet is a mammoth task, but recycling and reusing materials wherever we can is an important part of how Bambooka works.
We pride ourselves on being a progressive nonprofit brand that puts sustainability at its core. We wouldn’t do what we do if it caused more harm to the planet than good. That’s why Bambooka is one of the few brands out there that takes full responsibility for the lifecycle of its product, from the moment it leaves Bambooka HQ to when it’s ready to be re/upcycled.
Unlike other eyewear brands on the market, Bambooka doesn’t put its profits before our planet. We encourage our customers to return their old or damaged pair of Bambooka shades, and happy to provide a 25% discount on their next pair, rewarding them for helping us stay responsible.
Simply get in touch via our contact page once your Bambookas are ready for re/upcycling and we’ll get the ball rolling.
And the pairs we can’t sell because they don’t meet the Bambooka standards of quality? With the help of our friends, we’ll upcycle them with past projects included turning them into beautiful pieces of art. By extending the lifecycle of our product, we minimise our impact on the planet by turning waste into worth.
Plastic Free Sunglasses?
Yes, we’ve learned a few lessons along the way. As an eyewear brand, it’s difficult for Bambooka to be entirely plastic-free. Making shades with glass lenses would be out of our reach as a business, both economically and practically.
Does Bambooka use single-use plastic?
The issue of plastic never went off our radar, and we can proudly state we no longer use single-use plastics when we ship Bambooka shades to our customers. Highlighting this issue with our suppliers has resulted in us working together on plans to avoid shipping our products to us in a plastic wrapping.
It is difficult in this day and age to be completely plastic-free. But if there is a way that Bambooka can cut plastic out of our supply chain, we’ll do it.
BAMBOOKA STRIVES TO ENSURE ITS SUPPLY CHAIN REMAINS SUSTAINABLE AT EVERY STEP
Other brands introduce unnecessary steps into their processes, shipping materials from several different countries to another country for manufacture, then another country for retail. This makes for a sizeable carbon footprint that has a considerable negative impact on our planet.
Not Bambooka. Our sunglasses are made from moso bamboo. This is a fast-growing species of giant bamboo that naturally grows in China. So rather than harvesting it and flying it halfway around the world, we make our Bambooka shades in China as well.
And who makes them? We currently work with two manufacturers Ecoglasses and Lucent.
Lucent has recently provided assurances on wages and their approach to sustainability but we are always looking to learn more about the intricacies of our supplier chain.
With this in mind they have provided us with their supplier chain so we can be as transparent as possible:
Brilliant Vision – Factory (China, list of their suppliers) – Wenzhou PolyTrust Trading Co., Ltd. (China) – Lucent (California, USA) – Bambooka (London, UK)
Due to the charitable focus of the project and the fact we’re run by volunteers visiting our supplier and the factories where the products are made is out of our reach. We hope as Bambooka grows this option will become available, in the meantime, Lucent has someone based in China who is in regular contact with their suppliers. This has allowed them to provide us with vital assurances that no slave labour is being used, workers are being paid a living wage and health and safety measures are monitored.
Our frames are sourced from bamboo that grows in abundance. But what about everything else that goes towards making your Bambooka shades? For a start, every paint that we use to colour our shades is non-toxic and eco-friendly. And if you’re not convinced, Bambooka is happy to provide you with a sample of our paints for you to conduct your own independent testing on. Environmental laboratories such as SGS or Intertek can certify that all our paints are eco-friendly.
When it comes to our lenses, that’s where it gets a bit tricky.
We use a mix of CR-39 and Polarised lens, they are durable and made with high-quality resin or plastic film which are heated and stretched to fit. The durability works in our favour, and the planet’s: less breakages mean less waste, and any lenses that do break, Bambooka will replace. Unfortunately, the manufacturer of both CR-39 & Polarised lens does involve the use of some chemical components to achieve the optical quality that our customers expect. Right now, Bambooka hasn’t got a way around that – but we’re working on it.
We have also been informed no animal products are used in the production of Bambookas, Bambooka is good for the whole planet, and that includes its fauna too.
Finally: even our website is sustainable as the servers that host our website are 100% powered by a renewable energy source purchased from UK wind farms.
Bambooka is a progressive fashion nonprofit with ethics and sustainability at its core. You’ve seen by now what goes into making ethical sunglasses but if you want to know more about our story, people and the charity work we’re only too happy to tell you.
Seen enough and want in on this? Buy a pair of Bambooka shades and make a difference today.