Country Road celebrates sustainability milestone in Australian retail industry

by Helena Morgan
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Beloved Australian lifestyle retailer Country Road has been the recipient of applause this week as its Highpoint and Ballarat stores are the first fashion retail stores in Australia to achieve a 6 Star Green Star Interiors rating – the highest rating a building can achieve. 

The Green Building Council of Australia awarded Country Road the coveted 6-star honour for the retailer’s commitment to energy-efficient and sustainably crafted store interiors. The design process relied on repurposing existing store elements and incorporating recycled materials into the fitout in a bid to prioritise sustainability.

Country Road is no stranger to receiving accolades for its embrace of sustainable business practices. In 2019, the retailer proudly opened Australia’s first 5 Star Green Star retail store and subsequently established a precedent for thoughtfully designed and sustainable stores that encourage customers to explore and discover. 

The brand was also the first Australian fashion retailer to collaborate with Oritain to scientifically verify the origin of fibres in clothing manufacturing, alongside partnering with the Good Cashmere Standard by AbTF and advocating for responsible cashmere production.

New frontiers in environmentally conscious retail  

Green Building Council of Australia CEO Davina Rooney praises Country Road’s pursuit of environmental consciousness in the retail industry. 

“Not only is this a first for the fashion retail sector, but it’s also a trailblazing example of world leadership from a company reaching new heights of environmentally conscious stores,” she says.

Rooney emphasises the vast collaboration and cooperation efforts required to deliver a result of this scale. 

“From the sustainability teams who innovated to deliver these stores, to the leadership team and the staff who are fortunate to work in these healthy spaces, Green Building Council of Australia congratulates all involved,” she says. 

Skilful repurposing and recycling 

The design process at the Ballarat and Highpoint stores featured the repurposing of existing store elements to reduce waste – any new fixtures were crafted from recycled materials.

Fixtures were ingeniously constructed from recycled yogurt containers, carpets were crafted from recycled fishing nets and the wall cladding was sourced from recycled paper. 

Additionally, the hooks in the store’s change rooms were made from ocean plastic and kitchen bench tops were constructed from damaged Country Road Demm mugs and marble waste. 

Photography of the Ballarat store supplied by Country Road.

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