Consumers are waking up the repercussions of environmentally damaging production methods, reckless consumption and more sustainable business practices are emerging to address these concerns as a result. ARK is building a business that values people and the world we live in above profits.
We want to do our part to build a better world for our children to inherit. We do this through taking care of and having responsibility for: our consumers, our people, and our environment.
OEKO-TEX® approved fabrics to protect the environment (and your baby) from harmful chemicals. OEKO-TEX® is one of the world’s best-known labels for textile testing. It ensures that the environment has been protected during production of the fabric. This is independently tested and verified for the whole of the textile production process including dyeing. We’ve achieved this on 90% of the fabrics used on our product and we’ve haven’t stopped there. Soon we hope to claim that 100% of our fabrics are environmentally harmless.
We’ve also looked at materials for extended product life. On most pushchairs, it’s the wheels that break or wear out before anything else. Our off-road wheels are made from TPU – the same material that plastic bollards are made from. This is far more durable (vandal proof in fact!) than the expended foam normally used for pushchair wheels. This means less broken wheels going into landfill.
Our approach to our people, throughout our supply chain is inspired by the work of Orsola de Castro summed up by this quote:
“Demand quality not just in the products you buy, but in the life of the person who made it.”
We know our suppliers, we visit them regularly and work with experts in social factor auditing to determine that the workforce in our factories are treated well, remunerated fairly and protected effectively in terms of health safety. This can be anything from ensuring installation of fire suppression systems to the quality of food and cooking.
We have reduced the use of plastics in our accessory packaging to ZERO. We have reduced the use of plastics in our pushchair packaging by 30%. All our accessory packaging can be fully recycled easily, as can the cardboard packaging used in our pushchair packaging. Our boxes are made easier to recycle by using natural finishes and laminated cardboard without varnishes or lacquers. Packaging should protect your new pushchair or accessory whilst also protecting the environment.
Ark is designed for ease of repair with a centre setup already in Liss, Hampshire should consumer accidentally damage their pushchair extending the usable life of the product. This has always been part of Ark’s design process to ensure that the life of your product is extended as much as possible. We have a selection of spare parts for quick repair, and we’ve invested in tools to make this possible. We also carefully investigate the weakest parts of our products and look for ways to continually strengthen and improve these so that our products last even longer.
We have started a project with KNUSD University in Kumasi, Ghana to ensure that no Ark pushchair ever need go into landfill. Ark pushchairs that can no longer be repaired, will be repurposed, and used across Ghana to transport goods to local markets or collect water by villagers.
Phil Shaunton, Ark.