Our mission: To be the most sustainable schoolbag brand
We want a world where kids can be kids - free, playful and unburdened.
Since the founding of ergobag, we have passionately worked on being the most sustainable elementary school brand and to keep our ecological footprint as small as possible. All of this with the goal of creating and maintaining a liveable environment for the elementary school children of today.
Sustainability has not just been an important part of our brand DNA since foundation. We are proud of being a pioneer and role model for over 10 years, becoming better every year and setting new, high standards again and again.
It makes a lot of sense to us to give used materials a second life. This is why we have always used materials in our backpacks that are made of recycled PET bottles and have been turning "bottles to bags" for over 10 years.
We are also constantly trying to increase the amount of recyclable materials and successfully prove this with the new ECO HERO-Edition. Not only the external material, but rather also the interior and the mesh on the carrying system are made of 100% recycled PET. The buckles are made of sustainable castor oil and the straps are padded with algae foam from BLOOM.
The motto from bluesign® is to not use any hazardous materials during production to prevent chemicals from entering the environment and causing harm to people and nature.
Bluesign® certifies the production process during material production (in particular dyeing and fabric finishing). That is why we work with as many bluesign®-certified vendors as possible. Furthermore, we also do not use any per- and polyfluoride chemicals (PFC) for the water-repellent impregnation, because they are not biodegradable and we have converted our entire collection to a PFC-free impregnation.
Our pride and joy: with our bluesign® products, we have it what it takes to provide ultimate proof of our pioneer work regarding sustainability. With our ease, mini and ECO HERO-Edition products, we are the first school brand to completely satisfy the hard criteria from bluesign® for a clean product and a clean manufacturing process.
For a fact: any production company emits CO2. In cooperation with ClimatePartner, we calculate the CO2 emissions caused through our production of the ergobag ease, mini & the ECO HERO-Edition and compensate for this through select projects that contribute to an improvement of climate protection.
Furthermore, we also follow FSC-certifications or the origin from sustainable forestry for our paper-based products. We use climate-neutral services from DHL Go-Green or the DPD Green Delivery for shipping.
Of course, we also take on social responsibility for the people who sew together our schoolbags by hand. We see our producers as valued long-term partners and are in a very close, trusting dialog with them. As an independent body, the FAIR WEAR FOUNDATION additionally inspects the working conditions in the factories.
The FWF inspected our operations again this year in 2021. Do we perform enough audits? Do we train our producers on working conditions? How high are the wages for our producers? We had to answer these and many more questions. And this year we were also successful and distinguished with the "Leader" status - the best-possible rating from Fair Wear. We therefore are among the elite circle of companies that hold this status.
Given the fact of the corona crisis, it was particularly important to the auditors for us to work closely and cooperatively with our producers during times of economic difficulty. A few large companies cancelled their orders without payment, which led to drastic waves of firings in the producing countries. Luckily we were able to prevent drastic actions, such as cancelling orders, and maintain close contact with our producers even during these difficult times.
We are the first schoolbag brand to receive Green Button certification for our products! The ease blue and ECO HERO-Edition were certified.
As the first national seal, Green Button examines responsible companies and social and ecological sustainability in textile production. The seal includes 46 social and environmental criteria, while both social and ecological requirements must be complied with.
On the one hand, humane working conditions are in focus including compliance with minimum wages, work safety & a ban on forced labor. On the other hand, environment-friendly production plays an important role, for example, a ban on hazardous chemicals & softeners or the pollutant test for natural fibers used. In order to offer consumers certainty & the highest degree of transparency, independent inspection institutions, such as the TÜV Nord, perform the certifications.
• Foundation, products made of castor oil-based synthetic fiber
• Use of 10% recycled exterior fabrics
• ergobag becomes a bluesign system partner
• We provide transparency through the publication of our sewing companies & audit reports
• Membership in the Fair Wear Foundation (FWF)
• Obtainment of FWF Leader Status
• First ECO HERO-Edition: PFC-free backpack (interior and exterior materials & mesh made of 100% recycled materials)
• Complete schoolbag collection free of PFC
• First certified bluesign® product & climate-neutral products: ease S. ease L & mini.
• Beginning of cooperation with ClimatePartner
• Publication of all suppliers of the individual parts & sub-contractors
• First brand with schoolbags as certified bluesign® product for schoolbags: the ECO HERO Edition 2020
• First use of organic-based plastic (castor oil)
• First use of renewable raw materials (algae foam, BloomFoam)
• Green Button licensing: ECO HERO-Edition, ease S & L, mini
Make our annual savings transparent. As the past has already shown, we have already reached a few milestones. Nevertheless, we won't stand still and work daily on making our footprint smaller and challenge ourselves again and again, year after year.