Canopey co-founders Hugo Douglas-Deane and Thomas Panton.
(L - R): Canopey co-founders Hugo Douglas-Deane and Thomas Panton.

UK’s first marketplace that ‘streamlines the sustainable shopping journey’ launches

Canopey, a Norwich headquarters new online marketplace for environmentally sustainable and eco-conscious brands has launched.

Set on simplifying the sustainable shopping journey and empowering shoppers of all ages to buy more consciously, Canopey is the first online UK retail platform to verify the green claims of every brand it signs up in line with the Green Claims Code, as well as provide customers with the CO2e, plastic and water savings that can be made with each purchase.

Sustainability values which are vetted include vegan, plastic-free, compostable and recycling credentials. As new research reveals that 68 per cent of British shoppers feel angry that brands and retailers’ green claims could be misleading them into making a purchase, Canopey’s mission is to guide customers through the ‘minefield of greenwashing’.

Bringing together a wide range of environmentally sustainable and eco-conscious retailers at launch, its product categories range from beauty and skincare, clothing, food & drink, through to homeware and cleaning products, including household brands KeepCup, Wild deodorant, Ocean Bottle and Serious Tissues.

Unique to the new platform is also an industry-first impact calculator which highlights the footprint of each product bought compared to the ‘mainstream’ alternatives allowing customers to track the positive impact of their shopping over time; as well as educational guides which take customers through swaps they can make in their day-to-day life.

Canopey was founded in a field. The brainchild of two friends and entrepreneurs with a shared passion for sustainability, the lightbulb moment struck three years ago when Thomas Panton after the better half of a decade campaigning for Greenpeace and working in the events industry, was working with Hugo Douglas-Deane, at a music festival.

The pair stood in a ‘sea of plastic waste’ at the end of a festival, angry that not enough was being done to stop the world filling with junk. This marked the beginning of their Canopey journey. They have since brought on a new founding member, Abrar Rauf, a developer who gave up his job in The City to build a company that values sustainability.

Canopey founder and CEO Thomas Panton commented: “We started Canopey to bring real trust to the sustainable shopping journey. There is no denying that people of all ages have become ‘greener’ in their purchasing habits in recent years, but, the bottom line is, the retail sector as a whole has a greenwashing problem.

“So it’s no wonder that shoppers continue to find it difficult to know which brands to trust when it comes to their sustainability credentials, and which are simply jumping on the bandwagon. As big brands and retailers are increasingly trying to mislead shoppers who care about sustainability, we absolutely need a trusted hub for sustainable living.”

To date, Canopey has raised more than £442k in investment, including the backing from globally-renowned startup ‘accelerator’ Techstars, and the ex-Managing Director of ContentCal, which was recently acquired by Adobe for a reported $100m+ figure; and is already on track to raise more early into 2024.

By Matthew Neville – Senior Correspondent, Bdaily

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