Sustainability initiatives

Synsam Recycling Oulet Store

Synsam Recycling Outlet chain
The Synsam Group’s first recycling and outlet store opened in Linköping in 2020. The Recycling Outlet chain, which grew to a total of 24 stores throughout the Nordic region in 2022, is the first commercial centre purely for recycled spectacle frames and sunglasses in the Nordic countries. Synsam Recycling Outlet was born out of Synsam’s vision: that customers want to consume more sustainably and that the Group, as the market leader, can promote more sustainable consumption through attractive offerings. Second-hand products in good condition that customers have left in the Group’s recycling boxes are also sold in the stores, which also sell a sustainable frame assortment, such as collections that are no longer part of the ordinary range.

Synsam’s innovative spectacles subscription service
Synsam’s spectacles subscription service allows customers to rent spectacles rather than buying them. The Synsam Lifestyle subscription service gives customers the opportunity to have their vision checked regularly and, if necessary, to replace their spectacle lenses or contact lenses, and/or to return spectacles for reuse or recycling. The subscription also allows Synsam’s customers to learn about innovative new products, while at the same time contributing to a circular flow where the products can be reused by other customers.

Customers can return their spectacles for reuse and recycling in Synsam’s stores. Synsam accepts all types of spectacles and sunglasses from all brands, even those that were not sold or made by the Group. When the boxes of returned spectacles are emptied, they are sorted according to their condition and handled as follows:
• The flawless spectacles are washed and adjusted and the lenses are removed. The frames are then resold in Synsam Recycling Outlet stores.
• Some of the volume of spectacles is sent to developing countries where they can be used by a new wearer with the same visual defect through our partner, Vision For All.
• The remaining volumes of used spectacles are sent to the recycling centre. There, they are taken apart and all materials such as plastic, acetate, metal, screws, hinges and lens materials are sorted into the correct recycling fraction.

“Everyone should see!” initiative continues
Sedentary behaviour in childhood is one of the biggest public health challenges of our time. Therefore, Synsam has engaged in its “Everyone should see!” initiative, which promotes physical activity among children, for four years. Poor vision should never stand in the way of equal opportunities to be active. Synsam offers children with vision problems aged 5–12 a pair of activity spectacles free of charge through the initiative. The work of “Everyone should see!” continued throughout the year, and since the initiative began in 2019, Synsam has distributed close to 43,678 pairs of activity spectacles to children across the Nordic region.

Jessica Lindqvist, optician at Synsam Hötorget:

“Regular visits to an optician should be just as obvious as going to the dentist, especially since screen time is drastically increasing. Many parents don’t necessarily connect their children’s headaches and difficulty concentrating with vision problems. This could also be the reason behind a child avoiding reading and writing, or even quitting leisure activities. This is why it’s so important to have regular vision checks.”

Jämtö, Synsams first collection produced in Sweden.

Launch of Jämtö – the first spectacles collection produced in Sweden
Synsam has gone from idea to actual manufacturing of Swedish-produced frames in less than two years. The Group’s first locally produced spectacles collection manufactured at the production and innovation centre on Frösön was available for sale at its stores in September 2022.

The Jämtö collection is unique, and the design is inspired by nature in Sweden’s Jämtland region and the history of the district. The 24 spectacles in the collection are made from 69 percent bio-based materials produced from wood pulp and vegetable oils in order to reduce the Group’s climate impact and make a circular cycle possible. Even the case for the spectacles is made in Östersund from recycled wool.

Mikael Lotsengård, Product Development Manager at Synsam:

“It’s important for us to make it easier for customers to make conscious decisions. We are very proud that we can offer top-quality spectacle frames that are locally produced. The frames are mostly made from bio-based cellulose from wood pulp and vegetable oils, a versatile bioproduct from renewable wood material. This means that the material in the frames can be recovered. In addition, the Jämtö collection has a unique design and contributes to a circular cycle.”

The Sea2See collection
100 percent recycled plastic from the ocean is used in the production of Synsam’s unique Sea2See spectacle collection. The frames have been developed in collaboration with the Spanish organisation Sea2See which, with the help of local fishermen, collects, sorts and manufactures new products from the growing amount of plastic floating in the world’s oceans. Synsam helped ensure that 325 kilos of plastic was collected from oceans in 2022

Learn more about Synsams environmental and social responsibilities in Synsam Group Annual and Sustainability Report 2022