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N Brown Group moves to Green PE as part of sustainability plan

N Brown Group plc, the digital fashion and homeware retailer, whose strategic brands are JD Williams, Simply Be, Jacamo, Ambrose Wilson and Home Essentials, has moved its delivery packaging to Green Polyethylene (Green PE) despatch bags, improving the sustainability of its packaging whilst reducing its carbon footprint.

Working with Manchester based packaging specialist, Duo, the group completed a successful trial of Green PE despatch bags in Autumn 2020. In March this year, N Brown launched the Green PE despatch bags replacing 90% of its packaging and is expecting to reach 100% by the end of 2021.

GreenPE mailing bags are made from a thermoplastic sustainable resin derived from sugar cane. This means they are both renewable and recyclable. Each kilogram of Green PE produced saves 2.78kg of CO2 when compared to the production of conventional fossil based polyethylene.

The move is part of N Brown’s four year sustainability plan and follows the announcement in November 2020 of its commitment to the BRC Climate Action Roadmap, which is supporting the retail industry to hit net zero carbon emissions by 2040. The sustainable properties of the Green PE despatch bags, manufactured by Duo, mean that N Brown will save an estimated 112 tonnes of carbon per annum.

Sarah Welsh, CEO of retail at N Brown, said: ‘We believe online fashion should be sustainable, and a key element of that is reducing the volume of plastic across the delivery process whilst sourcing from sustainable sources. We are very excited to have rolled out Green PE packaging, an innovative solution which will immediately reduce our carbon footprint. In future, we want N Brown to be known for using sustainable packaging across our brands which ties into the BRC Climate Action Roadmap which we are proud to be committed to.’

Anthony Brimelow, commercial director at Duo, added: ‘Having worked closely with N Brown Group for a number of years, we wholeheartedly share its commitment to achieving its own sustainability goals and those of wider industry. It is also extremely rewarding for Duo to have supported a retailer of this operational size in realising the possibilities of its own packaging strategy, not only becoming more sustainable in its practices but to improve the overall consumer experience.

‘As packaging specialists, we have invested heavily in research and innovation that allows us to determine the most carbon efficient packaging solutions for our clients, no matter where they are based or what their application is. Our products, and how they work within a circular packaging strategy, are always designed to meet the objectives of our customers in reducing carbon and improving resourcefulness.’

In 2020, Duo saw a 10% increase in the volume of recycled content it uses during manufacturing and sold more than 15 million of its well renowned GreenPE mailing bags.


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