The Body Shop rolls out first Bio-Bridge project in India

From September to the end of October, every product purchase and transaction from customers visiting The Body Shop stores will help protect threatened elephants and gibbons in India, as part of the company's latest Bio-Bridges programme.

The India Bio-Bridges programme is part of The Body Shop’s ongoing commitment to protect and regenerate 75 million square metres of endangered habitat as part of its wider Enrich Not Exploit sustainability strategy.

The Body Shop has announced that for the next two months, transactions at stores will help protect endangered Indian Elephants and Western Hoolock Gibbon’s in Garo Hills, India. Each transaction will protect one square metre of habitat in the area.

“We have already seen the huge potential that Bio-Bridges has to offer as a life-line for wildlife depending on some of the planet’s most biodiverse but threatened habitats,” The Body Shop’s international director of corporate responsibility Christopher Davis said.

“We are delighted to be launching our new project in India which engages with local communities in Garo Hills. Here we have a fantastic opportunity to permanently safeguard elephant corridors and ensure the long-term survival of the Indian Elephant and Western Hoolock Gibbon, as well as the huge number of other species that call this area home”.

Since the Bio-Bridges programme launched in June 2016, The Body Shop has protected more than 17.2 million square metres of habitat across Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia.

The Body Shop will partner with the World Land Trust (WLT) and its local partner Wildlife Trust of India (WTI) to build a Bio-Bridge in Garo Hills, which is one of the world’s wettest regions. The 11 metres of rainfall that the area experiences annually contribute to the biodiversity in the region.

The Indian Elephant population has declined by 50% over the last 70 years, while numbers of Western Hoolock Gibbons have halved over the last 40 years. The Body Shop is attempting to raise £140,000 for the project.

The India project falls under The Body Shop’s attempt to “re-wild the world” through a new funding platform that aims to raise more than £2m to add ten more Bio-Bridges across the globe by 2020.

Musings to your ears

Earlier this year, The Body Shop took edie on a guided tour for the Sustainable Business Covered podcast. In the episode, The Body Shop’s Christopher Davis and research and innovation director Gaetane David discuss how the cosmetics retailer is championing ethical sourcing practices while catering to consumer demand.

More recently, Davis and The Body Shop’s ‎International Environmental Sustainability Manager Simon Locke reflected on the first year of an innovation partnership with the University of Brighton on the Sustainable Business Covered podcast, which focused on sustainable design research, systems and innovation.

Matt Mace

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