Celebrating Earth Month for 85 Years: Sustainability at HABA

Celebrating Earth Month for 85 Years: Sustainability at HABA

Updated April 1, 2023

Happy Earth Month! We’re pretty darn enthusiastic about Earth Month because sustainability is truly in our HABA DNA. We’ve been conscientiously working on protecting the world for our children for many of our 85 years in business. We're proud of who we are and the work we do to put children and the environment at the forefront! So, to celebrate, we thought we’d share some of the specific examples of how HABA implements environmentally responsible practices and the ways that makes us an eco-friendly and sustainable company.

Children & Sustainable Development are Top Priorities

HABA's core values all center around one common idea - children are the most important things in life. Children have always been why we take such great care in developing our products and why we take social responsibility so seriously, especially our environmental impact.

At HABA, our philosophy is simple: “Sustainable development meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” We know that protecting the earth for our children is as important to our customers as it is to us, therefore we are constantly striving to minimize the impact that the production and distribution of our products make on the environment, in order to protect the planet for future generations.

Company Wide Sustainability Practices

One of HABA’s top priorities with our German-made wooden products is our PEFC certified wood and our commitment to maintaining and supporting sustainable forestry. But we also incorporate many other strict environmental guidelines and go beyond the standards of environmental stewardship when it comes to our headquarters and production facilities.

Energy efficient technology and tools are integrated into every phase of production of HABA products. We were the first toy maker in Germany to pass a voluntary environmental audit and granted DIN ISO 14001 certification for environmental management.

The audit and certification have 3 parts:

1. Identify and control the environmental impact of its activities, products or services.

2. Improve its environmental performance continually.

3. Implement a systematic approach to setting environmental objectives and targets, to achieving these and to demonstrating that they have been achieved.

Recycling and Repurposing to Create Sustainable Heating

During production of our wooden toys, a lot of planing and milling takes place, creating an abundance of wood chips. The air exhausted by the machines is purified and separated in the filtering station, then routed back to the production facility. The wood chips which are collected separately, are then used to fuel the facility’s heating system. The course sanding waste is collected and combusted as well. Larger pieces of wood equal to about 3,000 tons each year, are sold or given away to employees and members of the surrounding communities to heat their homes.

Environmentally Friendly Stains, Rainwater Collection, & More

When it comes to coloring the wood, only environmentally sound materials like water soluble wood stain and varnishes are used. Any excess varnish during the production process is collected and reused right away. Cardboard and other packaging materials are separated, collected, pressed to bales and sold to companies who use them as raw materials. Even rainwater is collected via cisterns throughout the HABA campus to provide flushing water for toilets.

We are continually improving our technology to protect both people and the environment. Improved technology allows for continuous calculating, evaluating, and strides to minimize our use of raw materials. Environmental protection and preservation will continue to play a vital role in the future of HABA, our customers, and most importantly for our children!

We all know there’s a lot of work ahead but throughout our 85 years, HABA has always delighted in finding innovative ways to solve problems in a way that benefits “the most important things in life - our children.” We will continue to meet these challenges and go to great lengths to help preserve the environment.

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