Synsam wants to help make the future a better one

Synsam has high ambitions for its sustainability work, and in 2023 it continued its progress towards its vision of being the most sustainable lifestyle company in optical retail and eye health. The process of bringing eyewear production home from Asia to Frösön outside Östersund in Sweden continued during the year. Moving parts of production to Sweden is an important part of Synsam’s sustainability agenda. With its own production in Sweden, Synsam has complete control over its employees’ work environment and conditions. In addition to the social aspects, the environment has been an important driving force. Manufacturing products domestically enables an increased focus on circular, bio-based and locally produced materials as well as shorter transports and collaboration with local partners.

Highlights of Synsam’s sustainability management in 2023:

  • Jämtö, Synsam Group’s first collection manufactured in Sweden, was launched in several models.
  • The second-hand and Outlet offering has been expanded to a number of selected Synsam stores with dedicated spaces in order to reach more consumers.
  • 11,443 activity spectacles were distributed through Synsam’s “Everyone should see!” initiative, bringing the total number of children who have received help to be active on equal terms since the launch in 2019 to 55,000.
  • Synsam Sweden was named Optician of the Year at the Market Awards where sustainability management was one of the criteria.
  • Climate calculations according to the GHG Protocol were performed.
  • A double materiality assessment was carried out in preparation for reporting according to the EU Corporate Sustainability Reporting Directive (CSRD) and the new European Sustainability Reporting Standards (ESRS)

‘There is a growing need for Synsam’s medical technology services and products. Our vital public health mission is an important part of the Group’s social mission. Coupled with a focus on sustainability in the workplace and our initiatives for the environment such as increased circularity, more sustainable products and the ongoing reshoring of production, this is the basis for Synsam’s broad sustainability agenda.’

Håkan Lundstedt, CEO of Synsam Group

Synsam wants to help build a better future
Taking responsibility for public health in the area of optical retail and eye health is an important mission that forms part of Synsam’s sustainability agenda, as is taking responsibility for our employees in the workplace and for the environment and climate. The goal is to ensure that Synsam’s customers benefit from high-quality services and products. The continued reshoring of production from Asia to Sweden was an important part of this effort in 2023. Geopolitical risks are reduced and innovation is strengthened when production takes place closer to the market. Synsam’s production and innovation centre on Frösön supplies the market with products made from bio-based and other materials that contribute to circular flows and a reduced carbon footprint. We create jobs in sparsely populated areas, initiate local collaborations and provide a good work environment.

The Group constantly strives to better understand the risks and challenges of its business, including from a cli-mate perspective. This year’s climate impact assessments according to the GHG Protocol showed that the Group’s biggest climate impact comes from the production of raw materials and manufacturing. The climate impact assess-ments include related emissions throughout the entire value chain, and provide Synsam with an even better idea of where the Group can make the greatest impact.

Our stakeholders have taken note that sustainability is an integral part of Synsam’s business. Synsam was named Optician of the Year at the Market Awards in Sweden, where sustainability management was one of the criteria.

Synsam and Agenda 2030
Synsam supports the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) of the 2030 Agenda and has determined that the Group has a responsibility and the potential to contribute to several of the goals. The main focus is on Goal 12 Responsible consumption and production and Goal 3 Good health and well-being. Synsam also supports the UN Global Compact’s Principles for Responsible Business.

Sustainability management in 2023 
Synsam continued to work towards the Group’s sustainability vision during the year as well as towards the objectives and priorities established in 2022. The most important sustainability initiatives of 2023 and their results are summarised on the following pages based on each focus area. Employee engagement is an important part of Synsam’s sustainability work. A Group training programme in sustainability gives employees the opportunity to learn more about Synsam’s focus areas and how the Group works on sustainability as well as how everyone can make a difference.

Double materiality assessment
During the year, Synsam carried out the considerable work involved in conducting a double materiality assessment. The assessments and its results provide the Group with the basis for initiating the implementation of the CSRD.

Synsam’s priority sustainability areas
In 2023, Synsam continued to work on the Group’s three established sustainability areas: customer responsibility, social responsibility and environmental responsibility. The three areas, with their respective objectives and focus areas, are summarised in the model on the next page.

Synsam’s value chain
The Group bears a great deal of responsibility as the leading optical retail chain in the Nordic region and one of Europe’s leading players in the optical retail sector. Synsam’s entire business is based on a value chain where the Group takes responsibility for its impact on people, society and the economy. It is Synsam’s responsibility to work with its suppliers and partners to examine the various parts of the value chain from a sustainability perspective. This encompasses design, purchase of raw materials, production and transport in operations, sales, product use, and reuse and recycling. Processes and approaches have been identified for continuous improvement for each part of the value chain. Synsam strives to have a positive impact on people, society and the economy by making conscious decisions throughout the value chain.

Read more in Synsam Groups Annual and Sustainability Report 2023 

Synsam’s value chain