7 ways we’re reducing our impact on the planet
From sustainable ingredients to recycled packaging, this is what we’re doing to reduce our environmental footprint.
They might be tiny, but every vitamin, mineral, and probiotic you take has a big impact on the planet. That’s why we’ve added a full dose of sustainability, ethical manufacturing, and eco-conscious policies into every Heights bottle.
This is how we’re trying to make a difference.
1. We’re a Certified B corporation.
We’re a certified B corporation. The certification process is thorough, and can take over a year to complete, with assessments of everything from environmental impact, to transparency, to employee welfare.
It wasn’t easy, but it was worth it. Being a B Corp positions us as leaders in the movement for environmental and ethical business, and it demonstrates an independently verified, legally enforceable commitment to sustainability and governance, aligned with the UN’s 17 sustainable development goals. And as we are required to undergo the verification process every three years in order to recertify, it shows that we’re committed to continuous improvement.
2. And we’re part of the B Hive.
There are over 6,000 other B Corps across the world—it’s a huge community with the potential to have a real impact. The B Hive is a platform for collaboration and support between these B Corps. We can work together, using this network to coordinate environmental campaigns and social initiatives, or pioneer new business practices to support our team.
Because one person, or even one company, alone won’t make the difference. But together, we can start to implement lasting, meaningful change.
3. We only use environmentally friendly ingredients.
Almost all fish oil supplements are processed from the Peruvian anchoveta, which is the most heavily fished fish in the world. Much of the catch is claimed to be sustainably fished, but those claims are disputed, and Peru’s anchoveta stock is now at risk of collapse.
We don’t think that’s good enough. We only use plant-based omega 3, derived from algae oil. It’s grown in aquaculture tanks, so that it has zero effect on marine ecosystems. Plus, it doesn’t leave that fishy taste.
Much of the vitamin D3 on the market comes from a substance called lanolin—a wax extracted from sheep’s wool. But beyond being a bit gross, using products from sheep is problematic for the environment. Along with cattle, goats, and several other animals, sheep are ruminants. And ruminant farming accounts for as much as 11.6% of total greenhouse gas emissions. The less we farm ruminants, the smaller the greenhouse gas emissions. That’s why, at Heights, we use vitamin D3 that’s been extracted from lichen, a composite organism (part-algae, part fungus) that literally grows on trees and rocks.
4. And we don’t use palm oil. Ever.
If you look on the label of any supplement, you’re unlikely to see it advertising the use of palm oil. But many will contain palm oil in one form or another. Lots of additives (including industrial soaps and surfactants) require fat, and palm oil is often the cheapest option available.
But palm oil plantations are responsible for deforestation, ecosystem destruction, and a staggering loss of biodiversity. So you won’t find us using it. Ever.
5. Our packaging is designed to have the smallest impact.
We often get asked about our packaging. After all, it’s got plastic. That’s bad, right?
Having conducted lifecycle assessments, we’ve found that our recycled plastic bottle has a 3x smaller carbon footprint than a glass bottle. And while compostable film or sachets sound great, current estimates suggest only 3% are actually composted. And of course, the cardboard and paper in our packaging is 100% recycled, and 100% recyclable.
That said, we can always do better. Reducing consumption is the most impactful thing we can do to help the environment, so we’re developing innovative refill systems, so that you can reuse our bottles, and reduce single-use plastics.
6. We use local production facilities.
We regularly analyse our supply chains, to find out where we can shorten them. Because simply put, a shorter chain equals fewer carbon emissions. This means that we work with local manufacturers to ensure the lowest number of transport miles possible.
We also look at the impact each individual piece of packaging has. For example, we used to deliver the Smart Supplement in a compostable container. But the manufacturing took place overseas, so by switching to locally-produced, recycled cardboard, we managed to reduce our environmental footprint further.
7. And carbon-neutral shipping options.
Our products’ environmental impact doesn’t disappear when it leaves the warehouse. Shipping parcels around the country (and beyond) is a hugely polluting activity—up to 4% of global greenhouse gas emissions come from parcel delivery.
We use local delivery hubs to reduce transport miles, and continually review our shipping partners to ensure that we only work with companies that have demonstrated their commitment to reducing carbon emissions. For example, all of our shipping in the USA is now carbon neutral. And we’re working on the rest of the world.
Our efforts to become even more sustainable won’t slow down. The initiatives above are just the beginning. If you’re interested in finding out more about our commitment to sustainability, read more here.