February 23, 2023
Press release

Kappahl is donating more than three million Swedish kronor to sustainable development organisations

Kappahl’s customers are continuing to use fewer plastic bags – since the industry’s One Bag Habit initiative was introduced in 2017 there has been an impressive 78 per cent reduction. And the profits from bags purchased by customers in stores are donated to organisations promoting sustainable development. In 2022, a total of over three million Swedish kronor was donated.

Greater use of fewer bags – that’s the aim of the One Bag Habit, an industry initiative that calls on its member organisations, Kappahl included, to charge for carrier bags in their stores. The objective is to reduce bag consumption and raise awareness of the negative impact bags have on the environment. Single-use carrier bag sales have dropped by millions since the initiative was launched in 2017. It has also resulted in large donations of profits from carrier bag sales by the members to organisations working to promote sustainable development.

Kappahl donates all the profits from our bag sales to organisations working to counter littering in our sales countries. These are the Keep Sweden Tidy Foundation, the Norwegian Retailers Environment Fund, the Keep the Archipelago Tidy Association in Finland and Our Earth Foundation in Poland.

- Almost 80 per cent of the customers in our stores are now saying “No” to bags. Most of them have their own bags with them, often tote bags or other reusable bags. Together we have created a new sustainable habit, and the initiative has really become a sustainability win-win that makes a difference for people and the environment, says Sandra Roos, Vice President Sustainability at Kappahl.

Plastic bags still the most sustainable bag choice
All bags, even those made of paper or recycled plastic, are energy-intensive to produce, transport and recycle. When it comes to sustainability, how do we know which type of shopping bag has the least environmental impact? A life cycle analysis allows us to compare their carbon footprints*. Single-use paper bags contribute less to the impacts of littering than plastic bags. However, they often have a greater environmental impact in most other categories, including climate change, acidification, eutrophication, ozone depletion and land-use effects

- It is easy to assume that paper is more environmentally-friendly than plastic because it is a natural material. And of course that’s right, in some cases. But sometimes it’s not. When we analyse the carbon footprint of a bag, including all the manufacturing stages, we can see that a recycled plastic bag has a smaller footprint than a recycled paper bag, says Sandra Roos in closing.

One Bag Habit was launched as a joint initiative between H&M, Lindex and Kappahl in 2017 with the aim of reducing the consumption of bags and raising awareness of the negative impact that bags have on the environment. Twenty or so companies in the footwear and apparel industry are now engaged in the One Bag Habit initiative. All members commit to:

  • Charge for all bags offered to customers, regardless of their material or size.
  • Inform customers of the environmental impact bags have, the advantages of reducing bag consumption, and how they as customers can help to use bags more sustainably.
  • Offer recyclable bags that are made of more sustainable materials.
  • Donate the profits from all bag sales to causes that promote sustainable development in environmental or social issues.
  • Present an annual report on their results

* A life-cycle analysis, in which Kappahl compares a recycled plastic bag with one made from virgin plastic, one from recycled paper and one from virgin paper, reveals their respective carbon footprints:

Press contacts

Related images