Plaine Products has long been big fans of ECOBAGS, one of the original, reusable bag companies. We are closely aligned, with our shared dedication to eliminating single-use plastics and their mission to offer thoughtful, ethically and sustainably sourced, durable-reusable bags that inspire people to reduce, reuse, recycle and re-imagine the world we live in. We asked them to share a little more about themselves so we could get to know them better. Based on what we’ve learned we think you’ll love them as much as we do.
Who They Are
ECOBAGS was started in 1989 with a desire to see a better world, with less plastic, and more hope. They opened at the 1989 NYC Earth Day celebration offering their classic, reusable string bags, hoping they could help to make reusable a part of life. Today they sell a wide range of 100% cotton,100% biodegradable bags to replace single-use plastics. Their business is driven by two age-old sayings “Leave no trace” and “Do no harm.” They are a certified B Corporation, and their products are all made with fair wages, fair labor and according to SA 8000 standards for social accountability.
A Little History
ECOBAGS opened for business in 1989 with a simple goal: to produce responsibly made and sourced bags, so that reusable becomes a way of life. They started with the ECOBAGS Original String Bag.
ECOBAGS were part of the first plastic bag bans in the UK (Modbury) and Ireland. They believe that bringing your own bags to the store is the first step of many toward creating a world with less waste. Today, there are movements all over the world, banning and taxing single-use plastic bags, creating a “reusable-revolution.” How thrilling!
There’s a greater understanding now, that when you “throw away” a single-use plastic bag, there is no “away.” If you want to live in a clean environment that means you need to participate in keeping it clean.
Company Sustainability Highlights
Since they began in 1989, all ECOBAGS products are made in socially responsible environments. Their primary production partners, in India, have always shared the vision of an engaged and sustainable work environment. The partners offer competitive compensation, extended health coverage, retirement benefits, pension plans (under government programs), vacations and holidays; going well beyond local labor requirements. ECOBAGS CEO and Founder, Sharon Rowe, travels to India regularly and, over 25+ years, has created lifelong relationships.
With CSR (Corporate Social Responsibility), getting so much media play it’s important to hold certifications that are reviewed and recognized, internationally, by third-party agencies.
ECOBAGS’ supply chain for organic fibers (no chemicals, synthetic fertilizers) is certified through GOTS. Their supply chain for recycled & conventional fibers, is certified by SA-8000. These certifications are recognized internationally and cover operational and social workplace accountability.
ECOBAGS introduced certified organic cotton (1996) and recycled cotton (2004) to their product line long before there was awareness or a market for them, knowing it was the right direction to go in. All products are made of 100% cotton and are therefore biodegradable.Their recycled fibers are post industrial, keeping waste out of landfill. All fabric dyes are azo free and all screen-print inks are non toxic to both humans and the environment. Knowing that conventional cotton has a negative environmental impact, they are working to transition all of their products to organic and recycled fibers.
As a fellow woman owned / led company and a certified B Corporation, ECOBAGS is on a mission to live in a world with less plastic waste.
What the Future Holds
ECOBAGS are well on their way to transitioning to only offering recycled or organic cottons and no longer offering conventional cotton. Having recently revamped their packaging – most of the products come package-free with a 100% compostable hangtag – the new packaging is 100% recyclable or compostable and has ZERO plastics! It’s very minimal. They are moving toward compostable case-packs for wholesale orders and becoming 100% carbon neutral and offset all shipments shipped via UPS Ground. ECOBAGS take not just environmental sustainability, but social sustainability, very seriously.