Sydney entrepreneur makes business case for sustainability

ZiahA Sydney-based entrepreneur thinks the future of the paper industry is bamboo and that grocery shoppers should re-think their impact on the planet.

Ziah Lane founded No Issues – a brand that introduced tree free household products including facial tissues, toilet paper, paper towels and travel tissue packs to supermarket aisles in 2015 at Woolworths and Harris Farm, followed by Coles in 2016 – with a view to encouraging more sustainable sourcing practices.

Speaking to Inside Retail, Lane said consumers’ response to the brand has been overwhelmingly positive, with the paper-alternative “empowering consumers to vote for their planet with their pockets.”

“There is a massive amount of research telling us that consumers prefer the more eco-conscious choices when shopping,” she said.

“If companies don’t respond to this, they could risk losing customers and will continue to damage our precious earth for future generations.

“I believe there is a risk for companies not making changes to be more environmentally friendly – for starters, businesses won’t exist with no planet to do business on and the more profitable we become, the greater position we’re in to give back to charitable organisations and spread the tree-free word further.”

Commenting on major retailer’s efforts thus far, Lane said it wasn’t necessarily a case of retailers simply paying lip service in regards to promoting sustainable practices – with more businesses responding to people’s values and mission to protect the environment.

“In my case, Coles, Woolworths and Harris Farm Markets have been really supportive of the No Issues cause and it’s been so inspiring to see especially the big guys get behind a product like this – we are really grateful for their support as this is where we have the opportunity to have the biggest impact on the environment.”

Lane said the brand is planning to expand its range this year to include wet wipes and also selling to airlines, petrol stations, and independent retailers, hotels as well as in overseas markets.

“With the addition of new retailers and strong sales growth, we will also be looking for new private investment and considering bank finance for large forward orders,” she said

“However, above all, we will continue to develop the range of products focusing on innovative and environmental solutions for the modern day consumer.”

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