Bru, a forever company

With an eternal lifespan determined to have a positive impact for generations to come.

Sustainability is every person’s responsibility.

Sustainability is every person’s responsibility. As a company, we take our environmental impact to heart and are proactively working towards a lasting and meaningful positive impact on the planet, our community, our employees and all internal & external stakeholders.

The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.

The greatest threat to our planet is the belief that someone else will save it.

Robert Swan, British historian, Arctic explorer, renewable energy expert and active sustainability activist

Our Culture

Our Culture

Forward-thinking sustainability is engrained in our company culture and has manifested itself in visible projects and actions both past and present. These currently include many initiatives, as well as the ongoing development of a meaningful sustainability strategy with leading specialists Futureproofed.

Read more about Futureproofed

1. Operational impact

Our fully automated warehouse (constructed in 2014), located in Kontich, Belgium, is green powered by solar energy.
We have focused on reducing our paper consumption, with most work conducted as paperless, and screen based. Recycling is a priority, with recycle containers on site for all staff to utilise in their day-to-day operations. All incoming packaging materials of our products are recycled.
Throughout our supply chain we are working towards the removal of single use plastic for all inbound and out-bound packaging. We are constantly optimising our packaging processes to reduce the amount of packaging materials used.
1. Operational impact

2. Re-thinking mobility

Our initiatives include a reduced travel footprint for all team members, by using a hybrid of digital platforms combined with a reduced number of in-person meetings.
Our current employee vehicle fleet is comprised of 25% electric or hybrid vehicles, with the ambition for a complete transition away from gas/diesel within the next three years. The parking spaces at our facility are equipped with electric charging stations.
E-bikes are provided to all team members that commute to work by bicycle as part of our sustainability approach.
Employees that are not required to be on site to fulfil their functions have the full flexibility to work from home, reducing the carbon footprint of their daily commute, lowering traffic congestion and resulting in a better work-family balance.
2. Re-thinking mobility

3. Eco standards

We understand the impact the textile industry has on the environment and as such, over the years, we have taken strides to transition to more eco-certified fabrics.
These standards ensure that our fabrics meet the highest environmental regulations, which currently include:
3. Eco standards

STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX®

All Bru fabrics are manufactured and certified under the STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX®, guaranteeing that they don’t release any harmful finishes or chemicals into the environment and are completely safe for contact with you, your children and your pets.
STANDARD 100 by OEKO-TEX®

Environmental management

ISO 14001 establishes the criteria for an environmental management system and can be certified. Designed for any type of organization, regardless of its activity or sector, it provides assurance that the environmental impact of operations is being measured and improved. Currently 80% of Bru’s fabric supply chain is ISO 14001 certified with our ultimate goal to purchase 100% of our products from ISO 140001 certified producers within 4 to 5 years. The benefits of ISO 14001 are:

  • Minimized collective environmental footprint.
  • Diminished collective risk of pollution incidents.
  • Operations systems are continuously improved.
Environmental management

Global Recycled Standard (GRS)

GRS is a standard of verification for companies to determine the recycled content of their fabrics. It ensures that corporate claims concerning recycled content of textiles are accurate and up to date. This standard is audited on an annual basis by assessing the production, trading, and manufacturing processes to ensure the recycled content of our fabrics is authentic.
Global Recycled Standard (GRS)

Organic Content Standard (OCS)

OCS is a certification awarded to fabrics that are guaranteed as containing organic content such as organic cotton. Each party involved in the chain of production, from yarn supply through to finished goods, is closely audited, and controlled to ensure the item contains genuine organic content.
Organic Content Standard (OCS)

REACH

REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorization and Restriction of Chemicals) is a compulsory EU regulation that establishes procedures for collecting and assessing information on the properties and hazards of substances. It’s a regulation set up under the European Chemicals Agency (ECHA). Our fabrics therefore consistently comply with these mandatory REACH regulations.
REACH

4. Quality environment and health

Quality Management concerns all topics related to Quality, Environment, Safety and Health (QESH).
It is something that governs all our operations, from end to end. Our QESH team monitors our compliance, new legislation, and best practices throughout the industry. They are also responsible for making sure we successfully receive our ISO 9001 certification each year.
4. Quality environment and health

5. Sustainable Sampling

We believe that we can make a large contribution to sustainability by re-inventing samples in our industry.
The development of our digital offering, through TwinBru is one of our core sustainable innovation directives. Within the next three to four years, we expect to significantly reduce the carbon waste associated with physical samples.
The simple concept behind this is that one digital image can reach millions of potential customers compared to a single physical sample book or hanger that reaches at most a few hundred potential customers. Physical samples have a massive carbon footprint:
  • Transport of fabrics to sample production
  • Production of samples
  • Use of fabric in samples
  • Transport of samples to Bru
  • Transport of samples to Distributor
  • Salespersons travelling presenting the samples
  • Transport/courier of samples to final sales point
  • End of life of sample – no viable recycling possibilities
This whole sample polluting process has the potential to be entirely (or at least partly) replaced by fabric integrated digital platforms which will eliminate the carbon footprint and save the industry literally hundreds of millions of dollars.
5. Sustainable Sampling

Short term ambitions

Short term, Bru has identified key areas that we are already working on to coagulate our sustainability ambitions:
  • Build SMART transparent KPI’s to track our sustainability metrics and develop improvement targets – project results ready by end 2021
  • SAP Integrated Business Planning (IBP) module is being assembled to provide the following:
    • Measure our complete carbon footprint of all movement of goods.
    • Improved demand forecasting to reduce airfreight shipments.
    • Global study to construct regional distribution centers to reduce the distance/time travelled of our products.
    • IBP to be completed end Q3 2021.
  • Develop sustainability targets for our products and set a roadmap and timeframe for the ambition to achieve carbon neutrality – project results ready by end 2021
  • Encourage digital sampling versus physical sample book production and distribution – ongoing process
  • Reduce packaging & developing more environmentally friendly packaging – ongoing process
  • Collaborating with our suppliers to enforce stringent environmental production standards. We are developing Bru supplier requirements that suppliers will have to meet to supply us – ongoing process

The bigger picture

Sustainability is a never-ending journey. One path leads to the next, all with challenges and opportunities, innovations and improvements. This is our chosen journey, and one we have embarked on with a specialist partner, Futureproofed.
With their guidance, we have grounded our development strategy in line with the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG). The ambition of which is to end poverty, protect the planet and ensure peace and prosperity for all by 2030.
We aim to be authentic and transparent concerning our journey to sustainability, and in time, present full reports on our sustainability claims, including where we have succeeded and where improvements are still required.

Who we support

Bru would not exist without the community that allows us to operate, and it is for this reason that we openly contribute towards the following NGOs:

Live and Give

Live and Give is a Belgian-based foundation that works to help disadvantaged children in Vietnam. Live and Give has successfully built a boarding school and orphanage in Pleiku, Central Vietnam. 9 additional schools have also been constructed which contribute to improved living conditions for the poor people of Vietnam.

UZA Foundation

The UZA Foundation supports groundbreaking research within University Hospital of Antwerp (Universitair Ziekenhuis Antwerpen). Bru is strongly committed to supporting extensive research related especially to premature births, and in following the development of premature infants during their entire journey to adulthood.

Sentana Stiftung

Sentana Stiftung is a German foundation established to create a meeting place for lonely and ageing people and animals to meet and nurture each other. Sick and/or abused animals and cared for in this unique sanctuary while giving further comfort to their human friends.

UNICEF

UNICEF works in over 190 countries and territories to save children’s lives, to defend their rights, and to help them fulfil their potential, from early childhood through adolescence. Every year Bru raises money for their projects worldwide, in a mission to help the most vulnerable children.

Doctors without Borders

As part of our charitable initiatives, Bru supports Doctors without Borders, the international medical humanitarian organisation that brings emergency medical aid to humanitarian crises around the world.

Forward-thinking sustainability is engrained in our company culture

Forward-thinking sustainability is engrained in our company culture through visible sustainability projects and actions taken throughout Bru

Green initiatives

Solar Panels

Our buildings are outfitted with solar panels, which allow us to produce our own energy!

Digital Offering

Bru’s fabric sample solutions are streamlined and we have a wide digital offering.

Plastic Reduction

We have reduced single-use plastics in our offices and warehouse by providing paper, ceramic and glass dining materials.

Paper Economy

We optimise our processes using the latest technology to keep our operations as paper free as possible.

Waste reduction

Bru works continually to reduce waste both in our professional lives and in our industrial production.

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Bru, a forever company