*This feature is not sponsored or paid for in any way by Cove or any other invested party
Cleaning items are big sources of plastic waste in our homes. They are also some of the harshest chemicals we have in our homes - something that’s not only potentially harmful to people, but it also contaminates our water. A lot of us have come to just accept this as an unavoidable negative consequence of keeping our homes clean. However, many brands are challenging that and offering consumers with alternatives that are not only effective and safe but also massively reduce our plastic waste. One of those brands is Cove.
According to their website, Cove’s goal is to “add value back into everyday items.” Their hope is that by designing beautiful products, you will be encouraged to reuse them. So, they’ve made a reusable and refillable cleaning system made with natural ingredients in a well-designed package which hopefully inspires users to, not just reuse these particular items, but also make better choices with other everyday items in their homes.
We reached out to a brand representative from Cove to learn more about the brand.
Cove is owned by parent company Natures Organics Pty Ltd which was founded in 1981 with the goal of creating environmentally responsible products of the best possible quality with honest value for money.
INGREDIENTS & RAW MATERIALS
While most cleaning products on supermarket shelves are made from petrochemicals, Cove’s cleaning products are plant-based. They are all non-toxic and use no synthetic fragrances (they use natural fragrances). They also contain no animal-derived ingredients. Because of all of this, their products are all biodegradable and septic and grey water safe.
Cove products contain more active ingredients and at least 75% less water than your run of the mill cleaning products found in the supermarket which can contain up to 90% water. Because Cove has designed a system that allows you to just use water from the tap, you’re paying for the ingredients and the formulation, not for water which you already have at home.
INGREDIENT SOURCING & MANUFACTURING
Cove's ingredients are sustainably sourced, however, they currently do not hold any certifications for this. They also source locally where possible to reduce transport emissions and contribute to the local economy.
Cove products are manufactured in a site that uses solar energy in Ferntree Gully, Victoria, Australia. They have one of the biggest privately-owned solar installations in Australia.
PACKAGING & RECYCLING OPTIONS
Cove’s bottles are made of heavy-duty aluminium and high-quality dispensers. They are designed for reuse but are also recyclable. They use aluminium as it is infinitely recyclable and are recycled at a very high rate in Australia. The triggers or pump dispensers are, however, not recyclable. At the moment, the infrastructure to recycle these items is not available in Australia.
The refill pouches are made from a mix of low-density plastics, aluminium, and other low-density materials. Unfortunately, Cove is not able to go 100% plastic-free in this department as it’s very difficult to hold liquids without some kind of plastic. So they did what they felt was the next best thing, which is to reduce their use of plastic. They use 80% less plastic compared to a standard bottle. The lightweight pouches tread lightly on the environment and are recyclable through the REDcycle program. Just drop them off at your local REDcycle bins in the supermarket and they go on to be transformed into park benches or playgrounds.
Cove has studied implementing a return scheme for the pouches, however, they found that it was difficult to do this on a large scale as the pouches can be difficult to decontaminate.
Cove products ship in cardboard cartons made from recycled materials and are 100% recyclable.
GIVING BACK & ADVOCACY
Cove itself does not support a cause, charity, or movement. However, their parent company Natures Organics supports the following organisations: The School of St. Jude, Reaching the Unreached, Cambodian Children's Fund, Hamlin Fistula Ethiopia, Free To Shine, and The Jane Goodall Insititute Australia.
DIVERSITY & INCLUSIVITY
Cove does not have any data regarding their company’s diversity they could provide us with at the time of correspondence (September 2020). However, they shared with us that their leadership team has a 50-50 male-female split and that the company does try to foster an open and inclusive culture.
Cove believes that “good design has the power to create change” and they want to use that power to help shift the culture towards sustainability starting with the products we use at home. By designing a system that uses plant-based ingredients and encourages reuse and refilling that produces minimal waste, they give consumers an option that is all around better for the environment than the regular supermarket brands. And while it’s not a 100% plastic-free cleaning system, it’s way better than what’s currently on offer from the big brands.
So, if you’re interested in replacing your current home cleaners with something plant-based and refillable, maybe give the Cove range a shot. Reading through the reviews, we have a feeling you won’t be disappointed.
Cove is available Australia-wide on their website. Select items are also available at Coles Supermarkets and select IGA stores.