As a fresh year starts we're gearing up to share some exciting new projects and product launches with you, but rest assured we won't be leaving our values behind...
With our planet in a climate crisis, the next decade is our last chance to reverse the damage already made to our oceans, ecosystems and future generations. Here at Tom Raffield we're more motivated than ever to drive this change - and businesses must help lead the way. In 2020, we'll be maintaining our commitment to sustainability across every aspect of our growing business to protect our planet from the humanitarian emergency we face; we'll be seeking new ways of improving and pushing the boundaries of innovative design.
Here's the five New Year's Resolutions we've committed to in order to help us achieve our goals.
1. 100% plastic-free
Our packaging is currently 99% plastic-free and this year we’re pushing to find ways of transitioning that last 1% to a more sustainable alternative. All of our packaging is designed in house which ensures that each and every box we dispatch is considered, secure and traceable back to its source. FSC rated cardboard is, and has always been, used to package goods ready for dispatch as well as recycled papers (for our product instructions and care guides), labels and bespoke-made packaging by local Cornish company, Flexi-hex – all of which is widely recyclable and decomposable.
Our commitment to removing plastic won't stop with our packaging though. We are also aiming to become a plastic-free work place, seeking to work solely with companies that also put sustainability at the forefront of their business plans and adding to our growing list of easy-swap plastic substitutes (which currently includes glass bottled milk deliveries and re-usable water bottles for all of our team to name but a few).
This year we will strive to break the boundaries of design and redefine what can be achieved with wood, steam and a little imagination. We aim to find new ways to connect with nature and create beautiful, useful, handcrafted products that last a lifetime. In 2020 we will be launching two brand new ranges, so watch this space!
3. The greener the better
Our love of biophilia (the use of plants in interior design) is no secret. The health benefits associated with surrounding yourself with plants is incredibly well-documented and thus, we've really taken this advice on board when decorating our Tom Raffield workshops and design studio.
Our plan for the New Year is to continue to use our Green Range planters to squeeze as much greenery as possible into our work space. We'll be hanging them from ceilings, walls and standing in every corner to create the feeling of a biophilic paradise!
One of our main goals this year is to continue to improve the efficiency of our steam bending processes in any way we can. Last year we installed solar panels on the roof of our Tom Raffield workshops to produce a sustainable energy source, and the rest of our energy comes from a renewable, sustainable supplier. We also have a sophisticated system in our workshop that collects excess steam from the bending process and reuses it to save water, but we aim to find even more ways to reduce our energy consumption.
5. Invest in the future
We believe that investing in the future is the best way of running a sustainable business. That’s why we’ll continue to search for new talent and train the next generation of skilled makers. Our apprenticeship scheme is a great way of finding young creatives and makers, while our partnerships with Cornish colleges and universities helps us keep our talent pool local.