“Through aligning our CSR strategy and our production to the UN Global Goals we are now contributing to 8 key Sustainable Development Goals.” Henrik Marstrand, Founder and CEO
SDG 7: Affordable and Clean Energy
All lighting in the Mater Collection are made of materials that have sustainable elements from recycled aluminium to certified wood. Common for all our collections is that the light sources are the newest LED technology which is the most sustainable source of lighting we have today. The LED we use saves up to 85 percent energy compared to old energy sources and can last up to twenty years. It is Maters policy to conduct business in compliance with both national and international laws. Together with our core values we comply with internationally recognized standards. We have a zero tolerance towards corruption and are committed to work proactively to prevent bribes and eliminate facilitation payments.
SDG 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth
Mater supports the Human Right in all its forms and recognises its importance in an increasingly globalised work environment. We acknowledge the potential risks for not focusing on these important rights, both for the company, suppliers and employees. We wish to provide all humans the rights and freedom they deserve to enjoy. We have developed a strategy where people and the planet are in the centre of all our actions. With our suppliers we always try to engage in dialogue, and we try to teach them about the importance of safety and health. Further it is important to Mater that those who work on our designs are paid a fair wage. This is particularly important to ensure when we work with smaller suppliers. Through our Code of Conduct we make sure that we work towards better standards and more secure working environments and we believe that this is the best way to obtain results and help reach set targets or SDG eight.
SDG 9: Industry, Innovation and Infrastructure
Today all our products are characterized by some sort of sustainability. We work with new fast-growing wood sources and grasses. This applies to some of our designs with upcycled mango wood, wicker made of cane – a strong grass species which we use braided in daybeds and a new chair series. All of our products produced in the EU and made of wooden materials are certified according to FSC, and all products can be traced back to their origin. Further, the FSC scheme ensures that whatever wood is used will be replanted. Not all is and can be certified materials and it is more important that we work towards close supplier relationships. In connection with SDG nine we wish to increase the access of small-scale industrial manufactures. Hence many of our products are made from small suppliers with local craftsmanship. However, there are pros and cons of this ideology since we have to accept that their production facilities do not have the capacity or resources to become certified to the extent we might wish. In the end it is more important to Mater to have transparency. With every important supplier we make time to see the production sites, talk to our partners around the world and make sure that materials are being processed and sourced properly.
SDG 12: Responsible, Consumption and Production
Mater created the Bowl Table collection from sustainably sourced mango wood. The design reconciles old Indian craftsmanship with the simplicity of Scandinavian design. When the mango tree ends its productive life cycle, it usually ends up as a waste material being burned. The table top is turned on a lathe, showcasing the skill of Kharadi, an Indian wood turning community and supporting their local craftsmanship. The Bowl Table can stand alone or be paired as a side table vignette. The finish used on the table top is a lead-free, water-based PU lacquer. The legs are made of milled hollow steel rods and can be detached for ease of labour and transportation.
SDG 13: Climate Action
Mater has pledged to take urgent climate action and tackle climate change. We contribute to this mission by minimising carbon emissions using circular and upcycled materials in our furniture design. Mater has partnered with large Danish corporations in order to remedy the companies waste streams and create valuable and functional interior solutions with a new groundbreaking techniques. Mater continually develop new production methods with the purpose of increasing the types of waste streams possible for transformation into valuable design solutions and in order to find new ways of minimising use of virgin material. We launched the Mater Ocean Chair in 2019 and it uses some 960g of ocean plastic waste. While 1 kilo of recycled plastics raw material saves some 1.7 kilos of CO2, one single Ocean Chair saves 1.6 kilos CO2 emissions savings compared to virgin equivalents — demonstrating a CO2 emissions saving up to 82%.
SDG 14: Life below water
We contribute to support Life Below Water with our collections of chairs and tables made of ocean plastic waste.
Our latest design is called Nova Sea, and contains 96 % discarded, polluting fishnets created in collaboration with the Danish cleantech company, Plastix and one of the leading specialists within injection moulding of plastic items, Martin Munkebo. Plastix strives to contribute to the sustainable development of society through manufacturing of sustainable solutions, provision of innovative and quality products. Plastix deliver the high quality recycled raw materials that we use in our designs. The materials are collected from input streams from the maritime industry and our first collection is called “Ocean” - which combines innovative solutions to prevent pollution of the world’s oceans with one of the 20th century’s most renowned designers, Nanna Ditzel. “Ocean” is a reissue and originally designed in 1955 realised in timber veneer. We are proud that these products contribute to further closing the material loops, reducing landfilling, marine pollution and loss of valuable resources. Today the designs in ocean plastic waste complies to SDG fourteen, twelve and seventeen.
SDG 15: Life on Land
Another example is the Nova Chair. Nova means ‘new’ and refers to the innovative and sustainable technique of molding 3D veneer. The chair is made of recycled excess pieces of beech veneer, sliced and glued together in a delicate and patented process - thus creating a textural and organic looking surface. The result ensures a beautiful exploitation of raw materials and minimises the amount of waste in veneer production. The 3D veneer allows for the design to shape the wooden chair in a comfortable, light and organic shape. The design also complies to goal number 12, 14 and 17 under the UN Global Goals for Sustainable Development.
SDG 17: Partnerships for the Goals
All our suppliers undergo an initial screening where we make an assessment in regards of relevant CSR-elements. When we have established that the basics are in place in regards of Labour and Human Rights (working conditions, safety, working hours, child labour etc.) we establish a basis for remodelling their current setups, so that we see progress in regards of sustainability year after year. Our mindset and business model are structured around long-term perspectives focused on trust-based partnerships. This accounts for both suppliers and our design partners. We strive to find partners that share our goals and thinking and who desire to create long lasting, beautiful designs that are sustainable in materials and ideas. This mindset is also in accordance to SDG seventeen. Mater has partnered with local and innovative production facilities as Letbek Plast, Plastix, Martin Munkebo and Danish Technological Institute, and produce furniture design from discarded fishnets and fiber-based waste materials collected and processed locally.
“All our products must be designed to address one or more of the sustainable development goals. If this is not possible, we will not produce it.” Henrik Marstrand, Founder and CEO.