Certified environmental management system according to ISO 14001
With the implementation of DIN EN ISO 14001:2015, Filtral made a further contribution to reducing environmental impact in fiscal year 2019/20. Improving environmental performance and sustainable business are among the declared goals of the specialist for fashionable sunglasses and reading glasses. Sustainability at Filtral is a continuous improvement process.
Green Line sunglasses
In improving the levels of sustainability in its collection, Filtral has set itself the goal of using renewable raw materials in the production of Filtral sunglasses. The first step to achieving this has been the development of the Filtral Green Line models, in which fewer fossil resources are used. In the interests of the environment, a bio-based plastic consisting of 65% castor oil in the production of Green Line sunglasses frames is used. The sturdy castor oil plant, which is also known as the “miracle tree”, is originally from Africa, but can now be found in all tropical areas. A major advantage of this plant is that it is also able to grow in poor soil which is not suitable for growing food crops or animal feed, without the need for extra irrigation. The cultivation of the castor oil plant does not therefore compete with the cultivation of foodstuffs. For the production of bio-based plastics, the oil from the castor oil plant is extracted from the seeds in a mechanical pressing process and processed into granules. It ultimately replaces some of the crude oil used in the production of plastics. Despite the use of the bioplastics, the Green Line sunglasses are of the usual excellent quality. They also have the same features as the models made from conventional plastic – they’re just a little “greener”.
Plus points of the Green Line at a glance:
- Use of renewable and natural materials
- Reduction in the use of fossil materials
- No competition with animal feed or food crops
Alternative packaging: cardboard boxes made of grass paper
With the changeover to cardboard made from grass paper, Filtral is extending its sustainability concept to include the area of packaging – making its shipping boxes more environmentally friendly and resource-saving. Cardboard packaging is an integral part of the packing and shipping of Filtral products. It is made from paper or paperboard, and it is usually produced using fibre materials from wood or waste paper. However, it can also be based on fibre from other plants – grass, for example. For grass to become paper, it has to be dried, cleaned, cut and made into pellets. To make the paper, the grass pellets are dissolved in water and mixed with fibres from fresh wood or recycled paper. The production of grass paper does not completely omit the use of wood – but the consumption of wood is significantly reduced. The cardboard packaging that we use consists of 30% grass paper and recycled paper – no fresh wood fibres are used. The use of grass paper or grass cardboard has even more advantages. The grass comes from offsetting areas in Germany which are not used for agricultural purposes, i.e. they are not suitable for pasture or growing animal feed. Further processing also takes place in the country, which means shorter transport distances. Since grass is a rapidly renewable resource, it can be harvested several times a year and it therefore offers decent availability. Compared with conventional paper, the production of grass paper requires considerably less water and energy. It also results in lower CO2 emissions. The use of chemicals can also be reduced, as cellulose can be extracted from grass more easily than from wood.
Advantages of grass paper over conventional paper:
- Rapidly-growing raw material
- Reduced consumption of wood protects forests
- Lower water and energy consumption during production
- Lower CO2 emissions
- Fewer chemicals
- No use of land otherwise required by the feed industry
- The cardboard packaging we use is FSC-certified and climate-positive
Preventing and reducing CO2 emissions is a key aim of the Filtral group. For this reason, it is continuing to invest in PROJECT TOGO, a reforestation project in Togo. Since 2012, over 4.800 tonnes of CO2 have been offset (see certificate). Alongside reforestation of the natural forest, the Filtral group’s commitment is also enabling a decentralised energy supply via solar cells, creating jobs through infrastructure projects and supporting the construction of a health centre, a school and a drinking water well.
Through PROJECT TOGO, 1,000 hectares have been designated as a pure nature protection zone and are being reforested. Further information can be found here