The award-winning North East-based Queensway Orthodontics wants to be a business where people love to come to work, and that patients love to attend. Queensway Orthodontics is a ‘people first’ company – one that believes in their opportunity and responsibility to make a difference. It has joined rePurpose Global’s One for One Impact Guarantee Program to fund the collection, processing, and reuse of 30-40kg of ocean-bound plastic waste for every patient treated with clear, plastic aligners. By taking this bold commitment, Queensway Orthodontics is removing more ocean-bound plastic waste than it uses in its packaging.
By donating a percentage of every Invisalign purchase to plastic reduction efforts, Queensway Orthodontics is enabling the removal of between 30-40kg of low-value plastic waste otherwise flushed into the oceans every year. Through its partnership with rePurpose Global, the orthodontic clinic is supporting a vetted Impact Project in Bekasi, Indonesia, to collect and process hard-to-recycle waste streams otherwise too low value to be reclaimed from the environment, such as chocolate wrappers, crisp packets, and similar flexible packaging items.
By joining rePurpose Global’s One for One Impact Guarantee program, Queensway Orthodontics is not only tackling a $30bn a year funding gap that plagues recycling supply chains worldwide, but also adding a crucial income stream for over 60 waste workers and their families in Bekasi. Today, informal waste workers often earn less than $5 a day, work in precarious conditions, and face severe discrimination despite providing a crucial societal service for cities across the developing world. Through this initiative, the company is boosting these waste workers’ income by attaching value to hard-to-recycle plastics, while supporting experienced recycling social enterprises who holistically uplift ex-waste workers through occupational safety, health insurance, and skills training.
As a prominent player in the orthodontic industry, Queensway Orthodontics recognises the grave threat that plastic pollution poses to the future of our planet and the contribution that the dental sector makes to this problem with high utilisation of single use plastic items and packaging.
“We witness daily the dramatic amount of plastic waste generated by dental treatments and the processes needed to deliver safe and high-quality care. To us, the urgency of this crisis is impossible to ignore, though it’s very difficult to fix by avoiding plastic completely. Therefore, we decided to step up with this unique and innovative partnership,” says Dr Guy Deeming, Managing Partner and Specialist Orthodontist of Queensway Orthodontics. “In addition to our work with rePurpose Global, we are working incredibly hard to eliminate or reduce plastic waste in the practice wherever possible. Our range of oral hygiene products is now available with zero-plastic, compostable or recyclable versions and, for the first time, we are now able to recycle the Invisalign clear aligners. It is a cliché but there is a strong commitment that every little helps.”
Queensway Orthodontics’ commitment to sustainability can be traced back to prior work with Terracycle, to recycle oral hygiene product waste for the community and zero-waste brace-care packages as a non-plastic alternative. “Everything we do within the organisation is rooted in the fundamental objective that in order to provide great care to our patients, we must leave no stone unturned to reduce any negative impact of the work we do on the environment both locally and globally” adds Guy Deeming.
In addition, Queensway Orthodontics organised a beach clean-up event to celebrate Plastic Free July and the whole team took part in the exciting initiative. The team collected rubbish from Seaham Beach on Friday July 2: helping the local community, protecting the beautiful beach, and working with The Marine Conservation Society to gather data for the region. The team and their efforts meant they collected 11 bags of rubbish from the beach.
Aditya Siroya, co-founder, and chief impact officer of rePurpose Global, comments, “Planetary protection should be at the core of every business. It is so refreshing to see Queensway Orthodontics push the boundaries on tackling the plastic waste problem. Forward-thinking brands like Queensway Orthodontics are the need of the hour. We hope this pioneering move pushes more brands to take responsibility for their own plastic waste.
“By joining our Impact Guarantee Program, Queensway Orthodontics is helping us create systemic change across the plastic recovery and recycling industry. There is an urgent shortage of investment in solutions that tackle our plastic waste crisis, and conscious brand action has never been more crucial.”
All of this is in addition to Queensway Orthodontics’ new ‘Dental CSR Certification - Gold Award’ for their Corporate Social responsibility efforts, which provides testimony to the company’s on-going commitment and passion for giving back in any way that they can. ‘The Queensway Cares Commitment’ includes caring about patients, staff and the local community, as well as the environment.
rePurpose Global is the world’s first Plastic Credit Platform, helping people and companies take genuine climate action by financing the removal and recovery of ocean-bound plastic waste worldwide. The social enterprise co-designs and executes waste management and economic empowerment projects with a network of impact partners across three continents and eight countries, including India, Indonesia, Kenya, Sri Lanka, and Colombia.