Environmental responsibility

Synsam Groups Production and Innovation Centre, Frösön

A responsible business
The ambition to introduce circular flows to the entire operation is an important cornerstone of Synsam’s environmental work. Production, consumption and reuse must be interlinked and transparent. Synsam works continually to identify and improve processes in its value chain by setting high demands for both its own organisation and its suppliers. The opening of the production and innovation centre on Frösön in Sweden was an important part of this work in 2022.

Sustainable production
Synsam began production for the first large-scale modern eyewear manufacturing industry in the Nordic region on Frösön outside Östersund in the summer. The production and innovation centre is one of the world’s most modern and innovative facilities for eyewear production. At the centre, Synsam is able to both make use of and minimise waste as well as developing new sustainable materials. The location in Sweden also makes it possible to implement sustainable changes and get products to market faster, which in turn makes it possible to reduce climate impact through shorter, more environmentally friendly transports.

Bringing some of its production home is an important part of Synsam’s sustainability strategy, since this helps increase the use of circular, recycled and locally produced materials in the production of spectacles. The innovation centre is also a hub for collaboration, development of new materials and employee training.

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.

Synsam takes responsibility for all parts of the production process
The production of Synsam’s own spectable brands currently takes place at the Group’s production and innovation centre on Frösön as well as with the help of suppliers in Asia and Europe. Regardless of where production takes place, Synsam always strives towards production that takes responsibility for all parts of the production process. The greatest environmental impact in the production process comes from the use of chemicals, water consumption and energy supply.

Customers help to recycle and reuse spectacles
Customers can return their spectacles for reuse and recycling in Synsam’s stores. A total of 311,061 pairs of spectacles and sunglasses were collected in 2022, of which 83,760 were sent on for processing. 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.

Read more about our environmetal responsibility in Synsam Groups Annual and Sustainability Report 2022

Climate calculations
Synsam began the comprehensive process of performing climate calculations under Scope 1, 2 and 3 according to the guidelines of the GHG protocol. The purpose of the calculations is to investigate the entire value chain in order to gain an understanding of where the Group’s main climate emissions occur, with the objective of being able to set long-term objectives for reducing emissions.

The reported climate data for Scope 1 and 2 encompasses leased company cars, energy consumption (electricity and heat) in all stores owned by Synsam (excluding franchise stores) and offices as well as energy consumption at Synsam Group’s newly opened production and innovation centre in Östersund.

Design and product development with raw materials
The work of developing long-lasting products that can be recycled starts at the design table and with the sourcing of raw materials. Synsam integrates sustainability into the design of its frames through its innovation and development process. The Group continually tests potential new designs and materials in its search for improvements.

Recycled materials in the production of spectacles
An important part of the effort to reduce the Group’s environmental impact is to constantly increase the share of recycled materials and/or ecomaterials used as well as creating products that will last a long time.

Synsam is preparing to expand the use of recycled and organic materials and production through its production and innovation centre in Frösön. New sustainable materials for future production are tested at the centre. The Group actively engages in its own sustainability initiatives such as Recycling Outlet stores, the Circular Collection and the Sea2See collection in order to encourage reuse and recycling. In this way, Synsam makes it easier for customers to buy second-hand frames and frames made from reused and recycled materials.