We’re creating positive changes

Forest with sun streaming in
For a long time we have been making more from less; it’s part of our heritage. We’re also busy turning waste into resources, sourcing food and materials in a responsible way and protecting natural resources. And because we want to become energy independent, we’re making the switch to renewable energy.
Becoming energy independent
We want to have a positive impact on the environment, which is why by 2020 we’re going to be 100% renewable – producing as much renewable energy as we consume using renewable sources, such as the wind and sun. We’re also making our buildings more efficient, so we need less energy to run them.
Men installing solar panels on an IKEA store
We’ve installed more than 300,000 solar panels on IKEA buildings around the world.
Bird’s eye view of an IKEA store with solar panels
We plan to become energy independent
We’re already on our way by investing in energy efficiency and renewable energy generation.
A wind farm
How we’ll reach our goal
We have committed €1.5 billion to invest up until 2015 (mainly in wind and solar power) to help us reach our goal of energy independence.
By the end of 2020 we will produce as much renewable energy as we consume
A road less travelled
We sell millions of products around the world every day, so we need to get them from our suppliers to our stores and customers in the most efficient way. Our products are designed to be easy to transport (thank you flatpack!) and we are continuously working on reducing the number of journeys and making vehicles as fuel efficient as possible.

More than half our products are sent directly from where they are made to stores (rather than via a distribution centre), reducing distances travelled. And we fit as many products on each load as possible. All this helps to keep our costs and prices low while protecting the environment. Since 2011, we have cut CO2 emissions per cubic metre of products transported by 13% and we are aiming for 20% by 2016.
IKEA store employee moving products stacked on a paper pallet
Switching from wood to paper pallets reduced our footprint of transporting IKEA products by 75,000 tonnes of CO2 per year.
VIDJA lamp
Going back to simple
We’re always looking for ways to improve products. For example, we redesigned our VIDJA lamp, making it easier to assemble by eliminating 24 of the 33 components. This reduced the packaging weight by 28% and because there’s less volume, we can fit 128 lamps on a pallet, where there were previously only 80 lamps. See the VIDJA table lamp
Thinking outside the box
Sometimes when we think a product can’t be improved we decide to try anyway. One of our product designers found a way to pack the EKTORP sofa flatter and make the shipping box almost half the size. This cut down on shipping costs, lowered our CO2 emissions and lowered the price – with no change in quality! See the EKTORP sofa range
We’re big fans of wood
We love wood because it’s durable, renewable and recyclable. As one of the largest users of wood in the retail sector, we always look for ways to use it wisely. Watch our films to learn about the work we do to protect and conserve this precious resource.
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Listen to Steve Howard, Chief Sustainability Officer at IKEA Group discuss the goal of becoming ”forest positive” by 2020.
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See how forestry specialist Egle Petrylaite works closely with our suppliers to make sure wood is sourced responsibly.
Four people in the woods going through an IWAY quality checklist
Clear standards for responsible forestry
Our IWAY Forestry Standard sets clear requirements for all wood used in IKEA products. This includes a ban on wood that has been illegally harvested from sources involved in forest-related social conflicts, or from High Conservation Value Forests. All suppliers must comply with the standard before they can start deliveries. We improve our relationships with suppliers with certification audits to check compliance.
 WWF Map that shows IKEA & WWF collaborations in Lithuania, Ukraine, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Romania, Bulgaria, Russia, China and Laos
Bosnia & Herzegovina
Certifying forests together with WWF
We work with WWF and others to combat illegal logging and promote responsible timber trade. IKEA and WWF have worked together since 2002 to support credible forest certification. The work includes mapping and protecting High Conservation Value Forests to secure biological and social forest values. So far, we have helped to improve forest management in Europe and Asia, and contributed to increasing FSC® certified forest areas by around 35 million hectares (about the size of Italy) in the countries where we work together. Visit the WWF site to learn more about our partnership
Making things right when things go wrong
Several years ago we discovered tropical hardwood fibres in some of our paper products. This is not in line with our standards. After a full investigation, we improved our internal procedures to make sure this couldn’t happen again.
Preventing the use of illegally logged walnut
Our forestry experts detected illegal logging of walnut in China about five years ago. So, we stopped using this wood in our products. As a result, the MOLGER bathroom series is now made of birch from certified forests.
Learn more about how we work with forestry
In addition to suppliers meeting our IWAY Forestry Standard, the volume of wood from more sustainable sources – recycled wood and wood from forests certified by the FSC® – increased to 41% in 2014. We are aiming for 50% by 2017. Visit the FSC® website to learn more about this effort
A cotton grower holding Better Cotton
One of our favourite materials
Cotton is a natural, renewable material that’s used in some of our best-loved products – from sofas and cushions to bed sheets and lampshades. We’re working hard to make cotton farming better for people and the planet.
What’s better about Better Cotton?
We love working with cotton because it’s soft, breathable and renewable. But conventional cotton farming is often harmful for the environment and the people who grow it. That’s why we work with farmers to raise standards, and strictly prohibit child labour in our supply chain. We also partner with organisations like the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) and WWF so we can adopt a holistic approach to the complex sustainability issues surrounding cotton production. By the end of 2015, our target is that all cotton used will be produced in line with the BCI. Visit the BCI website for more information.
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See how we’re working with farmers, the BCI and WWF to help transform the cotton industry.
Sundar Borude, a cotton activist, teaches how to sustainably grow cotton
Meet a successful cotton farmer
Sundar Borude in the central Indian state of Maharashtra has become a “master trainer” and advocate for joint IKEA and WWF cotton projects that promote better cultivation practices. He teaches his neighbors the same simple measures – like using less chemicals and water – that have made his farm more profitable. Visit the WWF website to learn about our partnership
FÄRGLAV, a quilt cover made from a blend of cotton and lyocell
Finding alternatives to cotton
While cotton remains one of our most-used materials to work with, we’re constantly looking for alternative renewable materials. Our FÄRGLAV quilt cover blends cotton and lyocell, a soft, breathable textile fibre that comes from trees.
Clean, fresh water pouring over hands
Treating water with respect
Water is necessary for life – but clean, fresh water is something of a luxury in some parts of the world. That is why water, both when it comes to quantity and quality, is an important issue for us and our suppliers. By August 2020, we aim to become water positive by promoting water stewardship throughout our value chain. By working with others, we will contribute to improved water management in water stressed areas where we operate, focusing on both water use and water quality.
Working together to save water and energy in India
For some factories in Southern India, the only way to get enough water is by trucking it 50 km. Outdated machinery and a polluted water supply often make production even less energy and water efficient. Jansons, a textiles supplier based in Erode, southern India, was inspired by the IKEA People & Planet Positive strategy and started a partnership project to tackle the problem. Measures taken included a system to recycle wastewater for printing, a new dyeing process that uses less water and ensuring motors are only running when needed.

“Our processing factory is in an area of water and energy scarcity, which was a nightmare for us,” says Mr Thirukumar, Managing Director of Jansons Industries. “With support from IKEA, we saw the difference the project was making and we were motivated to look for more opportunities. With the commitment of our employees, so far we have saved over 285 MWh of energy, and 69 million litres of water.”
Water treatment facility at an IKEA supplier factory in Bangladesh
Water pumped into a water treatment facility in Bangladesh.
Thinking ahead: how to save water for the future
Over 23 million people in Bangladesh don’t have safe drinking water.

“I don’t want my children and grandchildren to be part of that statistic. I want to make sure my company doesn’t do anything that leaves future generations in trouble,” says Shah S Alam, managing director of Unilliance, an IKEA textiles supplier based in Bangladesh. He’s played an important role in the water projects IKEA has initiated at the company, and he’s pushing Unilliance to take part in even more ambitious projects to save water.
“When we started working with IKEA, we already had an effluent treatment plant to remove pollutants from our waste water before it returned to the environment. But IKEA suggested that we think of ways to reduce and reuse this waste water.

“For example, after some simple changes we now use waste water to cool our machinery. This saves us around 100 m3 of water every day – enough to fill 15 Olympic swimming pools a year!”

“In five to 10 years the laws in Bangladesh will change – everyone will have to reuse their waste water. Working with IKEA has put us ahead of the crowd, and our customers are noticing the difference,” he says.
Recycling in the big, blue box
Not being wasteful and making more from less goes back to our roots. We want to economise with resources and this influences us every day. By the end of 2015 at least 90% of the waste from our stores and other IKEA operations will be sorted for recycling. Our long term goal is to send zero waste to landfill.
We strive for zero waste to landfill wherever possible in our stores.
A recycling waste station in an IKEA store
Food you can feel good about
We serve and sell food to 261 million customers a year through our store restaurants and Swedish Food Markets. Our approach includes using more sustainable and organic ingredients – which includes purchasing ingredients that have been certified to recognised standards and applying animal welfare standards.
A UTZ-certified farmer checks a coffee plant
All coffee sold and served at IKEA has been UTZ Certified since 2008.
The new IKEA children’s organic menu items
More organic choices than ever
You’ll always be able to find organic food in our Swedish Food Market. Also, we always provide one organic menu option in our restaurants, including a new children’s organic meal.
A bag of UTZ certified coffee beans
Proudly serving UTZ Certified foods
UTZ Certified is an independent organisation that recognises coffee, tea and chocolate that have been grown sustainably, and is one of the leading sustainability standards for these foods. Learn more at the UTZ website
Fresh salmon on a bed of ice
Responsibly sourced seafood
All wild-caught seafood must come from MSC (Marine Stewardship Council) certified fisheries or appear in the WWF Seafood Guide as species that come from healthy and well-managed populations. Visit the WWF website to download a Seafood Guide
Waste sorting solutions can help reduce your impact on the environment
Small actions add up
Find out what makes IKEA an inspiring place to work. Hear directly from See how waste sorting can help reduce your impact on the environment. Go to Sustainable Life at Home
Empowering girls and women helps create holistic solutions to poverty and child labour
Putting people first
We’re helping to create a better everyday life for people around the world. Learn about People & Communities