The pioneering project, which aims to sustain biodiversity in locations which possess some of the world’s most endangered animals, has extended from its original site in Vietnam to two additional settings in Malaysia and Indonesia.

The global beauty brand is aiming to donate £200,000 this Christmas period. Each time a customer purchases a specially selected gift throughout the campaign from 1 November until 24 December 2016, they will protect one square metre of habitat and endangered animals.

The Body Shop international director of corporate responsibility Christopher Davis said: “Bio-Bridges is our programme to restore and protect wildlife corridors within landscapes that are damaged or under threat. All three locations for our Christmas Bio-Bridges – Malaysia, Indonesia and Vietnam – are located within biodiversity hotspots and contain key endangered species of flora and fauna. 

“Just by buying a Christmas gift, our customers are doing something amazing to protect endangered wildlife and endangered habitat in one of three precious parts of the world.”

The Wildest Christmas Ever

In Indonesia, The Body Shop will work with Orangutan Land Trust (OLT) to focus on the preservation and restoration of forests, with the raised funds going towards the establishment of a Forest Management Unit in Sumatra to help protect the southernmost population of a critically endangered species of orangutan.

The Malaysian initiative will create a partnership with Wildlife Conservation Society Malaysia (WCS Malaysia). The aim is to increase the population of endangered Malaysian tigers and to protect their native habitat, which will allow them to roam in a large protected landscape of Endau Rompin.

The two projects will help to prevent some of the world’s most significant habitat loss, with 11 million hectares of forest lost in Malaysia and Indonesia between 2000 and 2010.

The Bio-Bridges extension builds upon the ongoing Vietnam habitat protection project based in the Khe Nuoc Trong Forest, which partnered The Body Shop with international conservation charity World Land Trust and local partners Viet Nature. This Christmas, funds will also be allocated to biological surveys and community engagement projects to raise local awareness of the endangered species, in particular the Red-shanked Douc named Reggie

The funds will be split between the three projects, with 58% going to Vietnam and 21% each to Indonesia and Malaysia. The programme is being promoted through The Body Shop’s Christmas in-store and digital marketing campaign, ‘The Wildest Christmas Ever”. 

Enrich Not Exploit

The Bio-Bridges programme is one element of The Body Shop’s Enrich Not Exploit commitment, which aims to make the beauty brand the most sustainable global business in the world. Last month, the retailer announced it had raised more than £325,000 to fund innovative social and environmental projects through a collaboration with one of the world’s most renowned street artists.

The Body Shop packaging could soon be made from greenhouse gases that would otherwise pollute the atmosphere, thanks to an innovative research partnership between the retailer and cleantech firm Newlight Technologies.

As L’Oréal’s largest retail brand, The Body Shop states its CSR commitments contributes to and enhances L’Oréal’s existing sustainability framework – Sharing Beauty with All.

The Body Shop’s Bio-Bridges scheme on edie’s Sustainable Business Covered Podcast

In May, edie editor Luke Nicholls sat down with The Body Shop’s director of corporate responsibility Chris Davis to discuss the retailer’s ambitious CSR strategy, with a focus on its Bio-Bridges programme. You can listen to the episode here.

George Ogleby

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