27 March 2024

Sustainability story: DIJK

With over 30 years’ experience, Dijk is a leading European
supplier of natural decorations and home-décor accessories.
It is renowned for its innovative and transformative approach
to sustainability. In November 2020, Dijk demonstrated its
commitment to ESG principles by hiring a dedicated ESG

At first, industry reluctance stood in the way of Dijk’s ESG
ambitions. However, ESG & Quality Specialist, Mariska Kalk
explained that things have changed, “Companies are now
being forced to act due to increasing legal and policy
pressures.” Dijk rapidly adapted, incorporating sustainable
materials, packaging reforms and compliance with varied
global standards. It focused on areas where it felt it could
make a real impact. As an early adopter of ESG practices,
Dijk has become a frontrunner in its industry, quickly
adapting to evolving laws and consumer expectations.

Mentha’s focus on sustainability means it not only
collects our data every year but uses it to propose
and support bold new initiatives.” Mariska Kalk, ESG &
Quality Specialist, Dijk

Dijk has initiated sustainability projects across transport,
packaging and materials. It now uses 22 electric vehicles in
the warehouse – all powered by its 1,600 solar panels – and
only works with transport partners who put sustainability high
on the agenda. New methods were also devised to fit more
products on pallets. Using 10% less pallets means cost
savings, fewer environmentally damaging products, and less
emissions due to reduced transport requirements. In
addition, switching to a new brand for wrapping film also
resulted in a considerable saving on both materials (38% less
foil required) and on costs (a saving of over 30%).

Most projects are ongoing, such as the transition to FSCcertified
products, abandoning animal-related items, and
reducing plastic use further.
According to Managing Director, Carlijn Vermaas-Vehof, “For
our upcoming spring-summer collection, we introduced more
than 750 FSC-regulated items. Four years ago, we had just
20.” These initiatives not only enhanced Dijk’s product
offerings but also strengthened their customer relationships.
Its sustainable practices particularly resonated with larger
clients who Mariska explained, “have their own ESG policies.”
Mariska went on to say, “They report on sustainability issues
and are willing to pay for sustainable products.”

Dijk aims to intensify its sustainability efforts. This includes
setting stricter standards for suppliers and exploring
sustainable shipping methods, all focusing on CO2 reduction.
This will be achieved, in part, by expanding the company’s
ESG team as and when needed. In addition, Carlijn was clear
on Dijk’s ambition “to be the first plastic-free wholesaler in
home decoration, both in products and packaging.” Mariska
and Carlijn explained that everyone at Dijk recognises the
significance and growing complexity of ESG considerations
within both the company’s own operations and the wider

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