Looking to make a more sustainable choice when it comes to your bedding choices but don’t know where to start?
You can rest easy because The Natural Bedding Company is this month’s Carbon Heroes.
The Natural Bedding Company started as a cottage industry in 1984, with owner Andrew McCaig often making deliveries by bicycle (even back then, they were carbon positive.) Today the company supports Carbon Positive Australia’s projects, and we sat down with Shani McCaig, to discuss why caring for the environment is so important to the company.
Can you tell us a little about yourself and the inspirations behind your brand?
The Natural Bedding Company has been a small family-run business for over 36 years. Andrew, the founder, and director decided to make a bold move in 1984 and quit his job to focus on something he loved while also spending more time raising his son Sam. From the creation of the business, providing a natural, handcrafted product that does not have a negative impact on the environment has been a core value. What started as literally a cottage industry, with Andrew making Cotton Futons in his lounge room, has evolved over the years to where we are now, crafting beautiful handmade pieces that are non-toxic and eco-friendly. What continues to inspire the brand every day is the opportunity to keep evolving and finding the best possible products and materials to ensure we stay aligned with our vision.
Why is caring for the environment important to The Natural Bedding Company?
Sustainability is something that we focus on during every stage of production. Maintaining a carbon-neutral footprint is so important as we are all responsible for the environment. We source our Organic Latex and Coir from a trusted supplier in Sri Lanka who have a zero carbon footprint and supports their local community. Our Untreated Australian Downs Wool from Victoria and South Australia has not been highly chemically processed, thereby reducing the toxic waste produced within the wool industry. Aside from the importance of maintaining our own carbon-neutral footprint, we believe that by working with a company in a nation like Sri Lanka, we are contributing to local change there as well. We are sending a message that greener businesses can be very valuable economically, and in doing so, we hope we can contribute to a wider shift in attitudes towards sustainability at this crucial time.
What motivates you to support Carbon Positive Australia’s work in particular?
“One of the biggest motivator’s for us to support Carbon Positive Australia’s work was not only that it aligned so perfectly with our brand, but that we felt it was so important to help rebuild the natural environment and the damage that has already been done”. – Shani McCaig
Although we don’t use a timber unless we know it’s been sustainably managed and sourced under the government’s ecoSelect program, we still understand the impact that using timber has on the environment and want to help replace the trees that have been used to make our beautifully crafted bed frames and bedside tables.
Are there any other green initiatives that your organisation is working on? The Natural Bedding Company is continually reviewing its processes and procedures to implement more green initiatives. We have implemented plastic free packaging on almost all of our products and packaging orders to ship. So far, we have swapped out all our plastic in the staff kitchen; we recycle and repurpose all our production material offcuts, office paper, and any packaging we receive with stock from our suppliers. We are also working towards swapping to electric vehicles and choose our power providers consciously to ensure that we are using suppliers that support renewable energy. Last year, we took part in the Government initiative to swap to low power usage lighting at our factory and showroom.
Do you have any environmental goals that you would like to achieve? If yes, how and by when? We are currently working towards using electric vehicles to reduce our carbon emissions, particularly our delivery van. As a whole business, we encourage our staff to stay aware and informed of any other initiatives we can explore to become more environmentally friendly.
Is there anything else you’d like to share with our supporters?
The Natural Bedding Company feels strongly about being responsible for our environment and the resources we use. We believe that the lifecycle of consumer goods needs to be taken into account during production, and thus the materials we use are all-natural and, at the end of their life, can be returning to where they came from, Mother Earth. We ensure these mattresses are built to last, with a product lifespan of approximately 20 years and a manufactures warranty of 10 years, and once they come to the end of their usable life, the materials can be safely composted.