Our Sustainability Journey
Committed to achieving sustainable luggage design
To meet the challenges of climate change and increasingly unsustainable consumption, we at Cabin Max are committed to lessening our impact upon the environment.
Here's how we've been progressing towards more sustainable practices - and more importantly - how we plan to achieve even more in the future.
Our progress to date
Reduction in virgin material consumption
In 2019, Cabin Max was the first major luggage brand to launch a cabin backpack made from RPET - a material derived from post-consumer plastic bottles that ordinarily may have ended up in landfill or the ocean.
Since then, we have added an RPET option to the majority of our legacy backpack ranges and launched several new product lines that are exclusively available with RPET, like the Memphis range.
RPET is a very useful material as it both lessens our use of virgin oil, helps us to recycle plastic products that may have become litter and also requires a lot less energy to process than virgin materials.
Encouraging responsible consumer habits
Despite being a small business, we at Cabin Max understand that we have a role to play in encouraging our customers to dispose of our products responsibly when they reach the end of their useful life.
The vast majority of the materials used in our products can be recycled and reused again as other products, so our product labelling encourages consumers to take their products to local recycling facilities rather than simply throwing them in the trash. We also really encourage our customers to regift, donate or sell on usable products if they no longer need them in order to ensure that as much use as possible is derived from the bag or case.
Leave Only Footprints Picnic Range
Inspired by seeing the rubbish left behind after mass public gatherings, in 2021 we launched the ‘Leave Only Footprints’ picnic bag range. This collection was constructed from recycled materials, but more importantly encouraged consumers to show leadership and responsibility when it came to using the product too. Our customers love the message behind the product (as well as the inspired design too!)
Small Batch Production
“Product out of stock”. That’s annoying right? Well yes, but there’s a reason. We produce products in smaller batches than most luggage brands to ensure that we match consumer demand as closely as possible. However environmentally sound a product is, it will always be more sustainable to not produce it if there is no need for it, which is why we focus on smaller batch production with less wastage.
We’ve stepped away from cheap plastic postage bags. The majority of products shipped from Cabin Max HQ are now posted in Poly Materia biodegradable bags, so that if they do happen to leave the approved disposal streams, they will biodegrade to water, Co2 and humus in less than a year. No harm done!
Our focus for the future
A full range of recycled backpacks in 2024
We hope to achieve the target of all of our new backpacks and softcase products being produced with RPET in 2024. We’ll also be looking to move away from rubber logos and badges to more sustainable fabric based alternatives in order to reduce both oil and energy consumption during production.
Embracing Solar at Cabin Max HQ
Cabin Max is based in beautiful but not so sunny North Wales, so you might be surprised that we will be powered in part by solar in 2023. The large surface area of our warehouse roof, plus advances in solar power mean that we will be increasingly powered by clean energy, even on cloudy days. So whether we are wizzing about on the electric forklifts, or just making a cuppa for the office, we’ll be doing so in a more environmentally friendly manner.
Developing new materials for hardcase designs
The challenge of adapting our range of hardcase products to be more sustainable is a difficult one. Many materials that are billed as more environmentally friendly do not yet achieve the strength, durability and cost parameters that we require in order to sell our customers a quality product at a reasonable price. We will continue to push forward in material development until we reach our goal of offering more sustainably sourced, keenly priced hardcase luggage.
Advances in waste management and recycling at Cabin Max HQ
Like any company that offers a comprehensive warranty on their products, occasionally we get customer returns. If these are not in a saleable condition we send them to our waste management partner where the products are stripped and then recycled again. Similarly, product development prototypes will also undergo this process in order to ensure that any waste we generate is handled responsibly.
Keeping our feet on the ground
We’re proud of the steps we have taken as a small business to reduce our environmental impact, but we are aware that this is only the beginning. There is still much more work to be done to further reduce our environmental impact and we'll be continually monitoring and adjusting our products and processes in order to progress further. Watch this space!