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Sustainability

A Journey We're Proud to Take
with Your Dog's Well-being in Mind

Our Love for Dogs and Nature Shapes Everything We Do

Here at Greenbark we know that the ex­pe­rien­ces we sha­re with our dogs in na­tu­re are po­wer­ful. They linger in our memory, they inspire us, and they bring joy, love and well-being to both our dogs and ourselves. This bond and inter­con­nec­ted­ness be­twe­en hu­mans, dogs and na­tu­re sha­pes our com­pa­ny values and dri­ves how we run our busi­ness. For us it’s about contributing to a mo­re su­stain­able ba­lan­ce be­twe­en hap­py dog ownership and con­ser­ving our na­tu­ral en­viron­ment by of­fering sa­fe, quali­ty dog pro­ducts ma­de from low impact materials and ethical manufacturing.

A curvy path composed of alternating human footprints and dog paw prints in an SVG vector graphic.

Where We Are

As a conscious brand, Greenbark is just beginning its journey towards sustainability. Currently, we are focusing on carefully selecting products made from recycled, organic, natural, or certified materials from environmentally and socially conscious brands, using shipping companies committed to sustainability, and shipping orders in recycled or reused packaging. We have also prioritised creating a user-friendly interface that allows our customers to effortlessly browse dog products that align with their values, utilising filters and value icons. Furthermore, we are continuously improving our communication strategy to provide greater transparency about the materials and processes involved in producing the products we offer, empowering our customers to make informed decisions.

However, we recognise that we still have a long way to go. One of the challenges we face is that certifications and lifecycle analyses, which are both expensive and complex, may not be feasible for all environmentally and socially conscious brands to obtain for their individual products or business operations. This can make it difficult for us to assess the full sustainability of the products we source and ensure that they meet our high standards, even if they are made from recycled, organic, natural, or certified materials that indicate a certain level of sustainability.

Furthermore, many of our suppliers carry a wide range of brands and products, some of which may not align with our environmentally and socially conscious values. As a growing business with limited influence and bargaining power, it may be difficult for us to enforce our desired supplier code of conduct to the fullest extent.

A curvy path composed of alternating human footprints and dog paw prints in an SVG vector graphic.

Where We Are Going

As a small startup, we are committed to creating a meaningful impact. We have set our sights on becoming B-Corp certified, but recognise that the process can be complex and expensive. Therefore, we have decided to focus on actionable steps that align with B-Corp standards, while keeping a close eye on the requirements of certification. By doing so, we aim to make a seamless transition when we are ready to go through the certification process.

Our sustainability journey is guided by a global perspective that incorporates multiple disciplines and knowledge sources. We strive to apply international best practices across our operations, with specific pillars and standards informing our approach. Effective communication is paramount to our sustainability efforts, and we rely on the UN’s principles for Providing Product Sustainability Information to Empower and Enable Consumer Choice. For responsible management of our value chains, we are inspired by OECD’s six-step framework for Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Business Conduct.

As we move forward in 2024, we remain committed to improving our communication strategy and leveraging these guidelines to provide greater transparency to our customers. Our sustainability journey is an ongoing process, with the goal of empowering our customers to make informed and conscious decisions that align with their values and are good for their dogs. To this end, we will prioritise strengthening our due diligence efforts in our value chains, using the OECD framework for Due Diligence Guidance for Responsible Business Conduct as a guide. Specifically, we will focus on the initial three steps of the framework: embedding responsible business conduct into policies and management systems, identifying and assessing adverse impacts in operations, supply chains, and business relationships, and ceasing, preventing, or mitigating adverse impacts. Our aim is to create a culture of transparency and responsibility throughout our organisation, empowering both our customers and our business to make a positive impact on the world around us.

A curvy path composed of alternating human footprints and dog paw prints in an SVG vector graphic.

Partnerships

We are constantly striving to improve and expand our product selection, educational content, and communication strategies, with a focus on engaging and relevant content and products for our customers. We welcome national (Danish) and international partnerships and input from our customers, as we believe that together we can create a better world for our furry friends. If you share our values and are interested in genuine collaboration or sharing ideas, please get in touch via our contact page. We look forward to connecting with fellow advocates for dog welfare, our natural environment and sustainable development.

At the end of 2024, we will review our progress, revise our strategies, and plan our efforts for the coming years. Our aim is to continue making a positive impact on the environment, dogs, our customers, and our community.

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Best barks

The Greenbark  Team

This product contains content produced according to the Mass Balance Approach.

As a dog owner, you might be surprised to learn that the products you use to care for your furry friend could be contributing to greenhouse gas emissions. However, the mass balance approach offers a solution to mitigate the environmental impact of the chemical industry and transition towards sustainable practices.

This approach involves mixing both renewable and non-renewable feedstocks in the chemical production process while ensuring that the amount of sustainable feedstocks used is certified.

While the mass balance approach allows companies to continue using non-renewable feedstocks at a reduced rate, proponents argue that it provides a more realistic and achievable pathway towards sustainability.

Despite some criticisms, the mass balance approach offers a practical and scalable tool for promoting sustainability in the chemical industry and represents a significant step towards a more sustainable future.

FURTHER READING

If you’re interested in learning more about this approach, here are some  links to helpful resources :

The Genuine Italian Vegetable Tanned Leather Consortium promotes sustainable and ethical leather production practices in the Tuscany region using traditional vegetable tanning methods that ensure no animals are killed for their skins.

Highlights of Tuscan Vegetable Tanned Leather

  • Made with natural extracts from chestnut, mimosa, and quebracho trees.
  • Produced in Tuscany, Italy, where the art of vegetable tanning has been practiced for centuries.
  • The production process adheres to strict European standards for environmental and social responsibility, ensuring minimal impact on the planet and the communities involved.
  • Products made with Tuscan Vegetable-Tanned Leather are free from harmful chemicals and meet high standards for animal welfare.
  • The leather is durable, with a unique character that develops over time as it ages gracefully.
  • The use of Tuscan Vegetable-Tanned Leather supports the local circular economy, preserving a tradition that is deeply rooted in the Tuscan territory.

FURTHER READING:

For more information on the Consortium’s commitment to sustainable and ethical leather production practices, please visit their website at https://www.pellealvegetale.it/en/.

Alternatively, you can refer to our brief overview of their initiatives by clicking here.

This product contains leather trademarked by The Genuine Italian Vegetable Tanned Leather Consortium.

The Genuine Italian Vegetable Tanned Leather Consortium promotes sustainable and ethical leather production practices in the Tuscany region using traditional vegetable tanning methods that ensure no animals are killed for their skins.

Certification Standards

The Consortium’s certification standards are designed to ensure that products are made using traditional vegetable tanning methods and meet social, environmental, economic, and cultural criteria that prioritize fair labor practices, environmental sustainability, local economic support and the preservation and continuation of traditional techniques and craftsmanship that has been passed down for generations.

By adhering to these principles, the Consortium ensures that its member organizations produce high-quality leather goods that are both culturally and environmentally sustainable.

Transparency and Traceability

Through this certification process, the Consortium also aims to create greater transparency and traceability throughout the supply chain, giving consumers the ability to make informed decisions about the products they purchase.

The Consortium’s guarantee label, “Pelle Conciata al Vegetale in Toscana,” is an anti-counterfeiting label with a unique serial number that allows consumers to verify the authenticity of their products, while also providing information about the materials and production processes used.

Sustainability and Responsibility

By prioritizing sustainability and transparency, the Consortium hopes to create a more sustainable and responsible leather industry that values both people and the environment.

FURTHER READING:

For more information on the Consortium’s commitment to sustainable and ethical leather production practices, please visit their website at https://www.pellealvegetale.it/en/.

What is silicone made of?

Food grade silicone is a type of silicone that is safe for use in food preparation, storage, and cooking. It is made from a combination of silicon, oxygen, carbon, and hydrogen. The raw materials for food grade silicone are obtained primarily from silica, which is a naturally occurring mineral.

Where is silicone manufactured?

Food grade silicone is manufactured in a variety of locations around the world, including Asia, Europe, and North America. The production process involves mixing the raw materials together and then curing them under heat and pressure.

How sustainable is silicone?

The sustainability of food grade silicone production depends on a number of factors, including the source of the raw materials and the energy used in the manufacturing process. In general, food grade silicone production is considered to be relatively sustainable when compared to other materials, such as plastic. The main issues with silicone is that it’s not curbside recyclable; its production process uses fossil fuels and requires a large amount of energy; and it doesn’t biodegrade. 

Is silicone more sustainable than plastic?

Silicone is often considered to be a more sustainable alternative to plastic, as it is durable and long-lasting and while not perfect, the silicone production process does cut down on fossil fuel usage compared to plastic. Additionally, unlike plastic, silicone does not create microplastics or release harmful chemicals when it is heated or exposed to sunlight and other environmental forces.

Silicone sustainability claims

To claim sustainability, a silicone product must be certified by an independent organization that verifies the product has met certain sustainability standards. These standards may include the use of renewable energy, the sourcing of raw materials, and the product’s recyclability and biodegradability.

Is silicone biodegradable?

Silicone is not biodegradable, meaning it does not break down naturally in the environment and can create additional waste if not managed properly. 

Can silicone be recycled after use?

If you want to recycle silicone at home, you can do so by taking it to a recycling center or by sending it to a company that specializes in recycling silicone. It is also possible to recycle silicone by using it as a feedstock for energy production. Alternatively, you can try to upcycle your silicone product by giving it a new purpose, like using a silicone dog bowl as a flower or plant pot.

So is silicone actually sustainable?

In summary, food grade silicone is a safe, sustainable material that is made from natural resources, and it can be recycled and repurposed. It is a better alternative to plastic in terms of its durability, chemical emissions, and energy consumption. To ensure that a silicone product is sustainable, it should be certified by an independent organization. In addition, due to the non-biodegradability of silicone, minimal environmental impact from its use requires that careful management and responsible recycling should always be practiced.