Sustainability

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We All Dream
of a Greener World.

qe-home-Sustainability.jpg

We All Dream
of a Greener World.

But dreaming and doing are two separate things. That’s why we’ve established an action plan that helps turn these sustainable dreams of ours into reality.

Guided by 3 of our core company values —
1. Act From the Heart
2. Do Right by All
3. Take Charge

QE Home is taking steps to account for our role on this planet and in our communities. The textile industry is a major contributor to the waste and emissions crisis that present an ever-increasing threat to our world, and sitting on the sidelines is not an option we’re willing to take.

By prioritizing sustainable practices, exercising social responsibility, and ensuring ethical conduct, we’re creating products that aren’t just better for people – they’re better for the planet, too.

We know retail can be used as a force of good provided that all companies – no matter how small or large – commit towards a consumption-conscious model that buys sustainably and sells responsibly. Being transparent about the steps we’re taking keeps us accountable and focused on the task at hand, and more than anything we want you to feel empowered when you make the decision to purchase from QE Home.

While we’ve been enhancing the quality and durability of our products, expanding our selection of eco-friendly fibers, and improving our operations for quite some time, we’ve never formally built out a sustainability roadmap. That’s why we’ve created a 4-step action plan for moving towards a greener future, together.

But dreaming and doing are two separate things. That’s why we've established an action plan that helps turn these sustainable dreams of ours into reality.

Guided by 3 of our core company values —
1. Act From the Heart
2. Do Right by All
3. Take Charge

QE Home is taking steps to account for our role on this planet and in our communities. The textile industry is a major contributor to the waste and emissions crisis that present an ever-increasing threat to our world, and sitting on the sidelines is not an option we’re willing to take.

By prioritizing sustainable practices, exercising social responsibility, and ensuring ethical conduct, we’re creating products that aren’t just better for people – they’re better for the planet, too.

We know retail can be used as a force of good provided that all companies – no matter how small or large – commit towards a consumption-conscious model that buys sustainably and sells responsibly. Being transparent about the steps we’re taking keeps us accountable and focused on the task at hand, and more than anything we want you to feel empowered when you make the decision to purchase from QE Home.

While we’ve been enhancing the quality and durability of our products, expanding our selection of eco-friendly fibers, and improving our operations for quite some time, we’ve never formally built out a sustainability roadmap. That’s why we’ve created a 4-step action plan for moving towards a greener future, together.

 
    • ACTION PLAN

      Step 1: Establish

      With key members from our product design, supply chain, operations, and marketing teams, we establish a Sustainability Committee that takes a holistic approach towards minimizing environmental consequences. We develop and institute a Vendor Code of Ethics (VCoE) that ensures our network of suppliers uphold ethical and humane standards of production while caring for the environment and its communities.

      Our Vendor Code of Ethics outlines our commitment towards human and labour rights by ensuring safe and fair working conditions for those involved in our supply chain, despite differences in cultural and legal expectations that may exist. For example, our VCoE guarantees the equal and humane treatment of all workers, and safeguards against inhumane practices such as child or involuntary labour.

      Step 2: Access

      By tracing our supply chains, measuring current consumption, and working with third party auditors to ensure objectivity, we gain a comprehensive and nuanced understanding of our current environmental footprint.

      Step 3: Target

      Using the information collected, we set benchmarks for improving the sustainability of our business practices and products by using science-based targets to reduce the ecological impact of our entire value chain.

      Step 4: Action

      It’s time to execute on these improvements; we take charge & make change!

      Again, we know words (and dreams) are one thing while actions are another, so we’ve listed some of what we’ve already done to improve the sustainability and impact of our day-to-day practices.

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    • PRODUCTS & PACKAGING

      In the fight for a greener future, we’ve got no time to waste on waste.

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      In the fight for a greener future, we’ve got no time to waste on waste.

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      That’s why we’re taking steps to reduce, reuse, recycle, and eliminate wherever possible. By focusing on creating high quality, durable products sourced from sustainable materials, we can minimize the amount of textile overproduction and waste. Cheap linens, destined for the dump after minimal use, are a major concern when it comes to our environmental health, while products designed to endure are key for creating the circular economies of the future. We take pride in using eco-friendly fibers for our core products. Made from renewable raw materials and responsible production processes, these products have high resource efficiency and low environmental impact to ensure sustainability from forest to fabric (click to read more about our eco all-stars Bamboo Cotton and TENCEL™).

      We’re also working hard to minimize the use of virgin plastics. Our Less Waste, Less Trace line of recycled polyester products helps divert single-use plastic waste away from landfills by upcycling them into long-lasting comfort.

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      Quality control is another factor crucial to the environment, as it helps prevent excess textile waste. Throughout the entire production process, our products undergo rigorous testing to ensure they meet our (high) standards, thereby minimizing the risk of creating defective products that have to be discarded.

      By focusing on quality over quantity, everyone – including Mother Earth – wins.

      When it comes to the current realities of packaging in our industry, we’re innovating and brainstorming ways to cut down where we can. Many of our products, like our duvet covers and Aruba sheeting, come with built-in/reusable packaging that reduce the need for bags and excess waste. We’re also working on eliminating plastic bags from all stores, and we encourage our customers to switch to our reusable nylon bags (or bring their own from home) through education, promotions, and cost-saving incentives.

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      Quality control is another factor crucial to the environment, as it helps prevent excess textile waste. Throughout the entire production process, our products undergo rigorous testing to ensure they meet our (high) standards, thereby minimizing the risk of creating defective products that have to be discarded.

      By focusing on quality over quantity, everyone – including Mother Earth – wins.

      When it comes to the current realities of packaging in our industry, we’re innovating and brainstorming ways to cut down where we can. Many of our products, like our duvet covers and Aruba sheeting, come with built-in/reusable packaging that reduce the need for bags and excess waste.We’re also working on eliminating plastic bags from all stores, and we encourage our customers to switch to our reusable nylon bags (or bring their own from home) through education, promotions, and cost-saving incentives.

      In this effort to reduce our overall plastic use, we’ve recognized the need for a holistic approach towards these complex problems. An example of this can be seen in our decision to vacuum-pack bulky items! While shipping items this way does require extra packaging, it also creates less emissions overall, so the net benefit of the extra plastic is still greater. That’s why establishing a sustainability committee is critical for our continuing effort to make informed decisions that actually benefit the planet, all things considered.

      In this effort to reduce our overall plastic use, we’ve recognized the need for a holistic approach towards these complex problems. An example of this can be seen in our decision to vacuum-pack bulky items! While shipping items this way does require extra packaging, it also creates less emissions overall, so the net benefit of the extra plastic is still greater. That’s why establishing a sustainability committee is critical for our continuing effort to make informed decisions that actually benefit the planet, all things considered.

    • SUPPLY CHAIN & OPERATIONS

      They say it takes a village to raise a child... we say it takes a lot more to bring quality products into the homes of millions of Canadians! That’s why the ethics and effects of our supply chain and operations are paramount to our commitment towards sustainability.

      Since we source materials from around the world in order to craft the finest possible products, we’ve had to take an international approach in our production and labour practices. To do this, we develop strong, ongoing relationships with facilities so that we can build mutual trust, ensure product quality and consistency, and improve our practices and technology over time.

      Beyond making visits to the facilities ourselves, we also work with third-party auditors to evaluate, monitor, and certify the social and environmental practices of our suppliers. We’re currently in the process of developing a Vendors Code of Ethics (based on industry-recognized principles and international standards) that will ensure all suppliers — no matter their location — uphold a consistent set of policies when it comes to working conditions and environmental regulations.

      As for our national operations, we’ve made changes to significantly reduce our environmental burden. Freight (train) transport produces 50-75% less carbon emission than trucks, so we’ve switched to shipping our products by train to Eastern Canada. We’ve also invested in an east coast delivery facility that allows us to increase our efficiency in fulfilling e-commerce orders. Our warehouse and distribution centers reuse cardboard boxes to cut down on waste, and when stores undergo renovation, we refit them with LED lighting and bluetooth technology to help save energy and reduce wiring.

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    • EDUCATION FOR CUSTOMERS & STAFF

      Admitting there’s a problem is the first step – that’s why informing our customers and staff on environmental issues is so important to us.

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      Admitting there’s a problem is the first step – that’s why informing our customers and staff on environmental issues is so important to us.

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      If you’re familiar with our business (or you read this page closely), you’ll know that we’re committed to continuously educating our customers – and consequently, our staff – on the benefits of choosing eco-friendly materials. The many web pages and blog posts dedicated to this topic alone should be a good indicator! We also utilize online alternatives for training our staff and hosting meetings so that we can reduce paper waste and any emissions created from travel. The few in-person meetings we do have are designed to maximize efficiency so that we can make the most out of the time we have to spend together.

      As far as our in-store experiences go, we’re in the process of adding QR codes to all product knowledge sheets in an effort to eliminate waste paper. We also credit customers who choose to reuse their own bags, and extensively train our staff on proper recycling procedures.

    • COMMUNITY & DRIVING CHANGE

      Change starts close to home – that’s why every year QE Home donates hundreds of products and thousands of dollars to charities and non-profit organizations across Canada — including women’s shelters, mission services, children’s hospitals, LGBTQ+ foundations, and more. Supporting communities and individuals in need helps us sleep better at night, and we’re always looking for more ways to get involved with those around us.

      When it comes to green initiatives specifically, we’ve put our money where our mouths are. By donating a percentage of our eco-sheeting sales to the reforestation initiative One Tree Planted, we were able to plant 5000 new trees in Canada! Exploring other opportunities for partnership with environmental organizations is something we look forward to doing more of as we move forward with this sustainable vision of ours.

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