McQueens Flowers has been awarded the revered Positive Luxury Butterfly Mark demonstrating its sustainable qualities as a company. The business is the only floral brand to have achieved this accolade and carry the logo as a result of its corporate and social responsibility plan.
Every member of the McQueens Flowers family is helping to deliver the global action plan with a vision to be ‘the best flower business in the world to work for’.
Created by people at the frontline, not in the boardroom, the plan is designed to be achievable, and focuses on four areas of action – the company, people, suppliers and community. It applies to all members of the McQueens Flowers Group of companies worldwide and has two guiding principles - compliance and positive action. For McQueens, compliance is a commitment to legality, best practice, and national and global standards while positive action is every initiative that promotes rights and wellbeing of people, helps communities, and protects the natural world.
The brand has been rewarded for positive actions in the areas of diversity & inclusion; waste and CO2 reduction; promoting equal pay; philanthropy; community investment; fair labour; conscious design and forest conservation.
Diversity & inclusion
In line with a mission to be “the best flower business in the world to work for,” McQueens Flowers has several policies in place. This includes paying a local living wage in every city it works in, reporting performance in terms of its gender pay gap, and being committed to closing it by April 2021. McQueens Flowers distributes a portion of profits to all employees who have worked at the company for at least six months, along with enhancing their skills through their Flower School Tutor Training programme. For new parents within their company, McQueens Flowers offers full pay to both primary and secondary parents and plans to introduce more flexible working for parents by April 2020.
Waste & CO2 reduction
McQueens Flowers has an overall mission to reduce waste, responsibly consume energy and to eliminate the use of unsustainable materials. All the electricity used comes from renewable sources and it will replace the fleet with low or zero emission vehicles by April 2021. Because a lot of tropical and out-of-season florals are now being grown in Europe, accessing those flowers will help McQueens Flowers reduce its carbon footprint, as well. McQueens Flowers aims to reduce its use of floral foam by 50% by April of 2021 and is constantly engaged with foam manufacturers to support innovation so they can produce a compostable alternative.
Through a variety of training programs and opportunities, McQueens Flowers supports the local communities where it runs business. It is working towards providing even more employment opportunities for local young people by April of 2020, and four full-fee bursaries each year to young people living in the London Borough of Tower Hamlets so they can join the Flower School’s four-week course. McQueens Flowers donated part of the Chelsea Flower Show bee installation to The Cambridge University Botanic Gardens so all visitors can learn more about the role of bees in growing plants. In addition, McQueens Flowers works with the British Beekeepers Association to raise awareness at a government level and protect the honeybee.
Conscious sourcing, design & delivery
McQueens Flowers works directly with suppliers and stays on top of any issues by helping them develop an action plan. It only works with suppliers who share the same standards of ethics and sustainability: members of the Floriculture Sustainability Initiative who sign a variety of flower industry-specific codes of conduct and adhere to McQueens Flowers own policies. When it comes to floral design, McQueens Flowers gives customers the option to receive finished designs without floral foam and has introduced a gardening division so customers can create longer-lasting designs. It has re-worked its retail presentation to ensure that their flower bags are 100% biodegradable, cellophane is reduced by 80%, and to introduce a biodegradable alternative, Nativia. Plus, it has switched to recyclable cardboard boxes rather than plastic crates for the transport of retail orders and combines orders to maximise efficiency.
Richard Eagleton, CEO of McQueens Flowers comments, “As one of the largest and most international luxury floral design companies, we know that even the smallest of actions can help to make a big difference. Wherever you find us in the world, every member of the McQueens Flowers family is committed to our vision of sustainability without creative compromise.”
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