Lifetime's Global Corporate Citizenship
Our Commitment From The Beginning
Since Lifetime Products’ beginning in 1986, the company has focused on building products that last decades. This is the basis of Lifetime’s global citizenship. Designing and manufacturing quality products that last is the first step in responsible usage of the earth’s resources. In 2015, the United Nations General Assembly established 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). These goals, also called global goals, are a collection of 17 interlinked global objectives designed to be a “shared blueprint for peace and prosperity for people and the planet, now and into the future.”
Lifetime specifically focuses on six of these SDGs which are most applicable to company processes: Goal 6 – Clean Water and Sanitation; Goal 7 – Affordable and Clean Energy; Goal 8 – Decent Work and Economic Growth; Goal 9 – Industry, Innovation, and Infrastructure; Goal 12 – Responsible Consumption and Production; and Goal 13 – Climate Action. Each of these goals helps Lifetime with its mission to be an exceptional global citizen and to help the environment.
“We care about the world we have been given and feel a true responsibility to care for and protect the planet for future generations. We do this through product design, material selection, responsible manufacturing, and renewable energy consumption. We work to continually improve in all areas of corporate responsibility.” – Richard Hendrickson, President and CEO
Clean Water and Sanitation
Access to safe water, sanitation and hygiene is the most basic human need for health and well-being. Billions of people will lack access to these basic services in 2030 unless progress quadruples. Demand for water is rising owing to rapid population growth, urbanization and increasing water needs from agriculture, industry, and energy sectors. In the Western United States, a record-breaking drought continues to plague the land. Water is a limited resource and both business and residents must conserve to ensure there is a sustainable amount of water available.
Lifetime Products is continually working on ways to use water in a more efficient way. Water is used during the blow-molding process to cool down the machines after plastic is molded. Rather than disposing of the water after one use, this water is screened, strained, and reused, eliminating the disposal of perfectly good water.
In 2022, Lifetime Products opened a new 670,000-square foot distribution center. Because of the building’s location and city ordinances regarding required plants per square foot of concrete, the project would have required Lifetime to plant hundreds of trees and shrubs around the building. The large amount of plants would have required an enormous amount of water to keep alive. Lifetime Products worked with both Clearfield City and Weber Basin Water Conservancy District to revise the ordinances to focus on water reduction. Because of the major drought situation in Utah, everyone involved felt this would be a great way to give back to the environment and local community. The changes in the ordinance reduced water for landscaping by 77%, saving tens of thousands of gallons of water each week for the new building.
The global temperature is increasing at an alarming rate and in 2020 the concentrations of global greenhouse gases reached new highs. Lifetime is working hard to find ways to reduce its carbon emissions.
Over the past few years, Lifetime has put an increased focus on understanding its carbon footprint. This is not an easy task, as these numbers are often reported in potential to emit rather than actual emission. Trinity Consultants, an outside consulting firm, has helped Lifetime gather the information needed to understand Lifetime’s potential to emit. Now that a yearly measurement has been obtained, Lifetime is working on ways to decrease its emission potential. Lifetime currently has in-work projects to reduce potential to emit and in turn its carbon footprint.
In the powder-coating process, the powder used to coat products is also adhered onto the racks. When the powder is on the racks, they lose the ability to maintain a good quality ground for the production of new parts. To be able to reuse the racks, one must burn them, removing the powder. This requires large burn-off ovens. These machines use a large open flame and natural gas to heat the ovens to the point of burning off the excess powder, and in doing so, put off a large quantity of emissions. Lifetime is in the process of replacing these massive ovens with a more energy-efficient version of the process. The new machines utilize close-oven technology instead of blast furnaces. They will be more enclosed and keep heat contained, allowing the burn-off to successfully take place while reducing the natural and other gas let out into the environment.
Lifetime is also working on replacing current propane forklifts with electric forklifts. This process will take some time, but will also reduce potential to emit and carbon footprint.
Lifetime works with many partners including (but not limited to): Rocky Mountain Power, Geocycle, Fastenal, Clearfield City, Robinson Waste, Rocky Mountain Recycle, and others. Each of these partners play a vital role in helping Lifetime reach its goals.
Affordable and Clean Energy
According to the United Nations, the world is making progress toward the affordable and clean energy goal, with encouraging signs that energy is becoming more sustainable and widely available. Energy efficiency continues to improve, and renewable energy is making impressive gains in the electricity sector.
Lifetime Products continues to find ways in processes to conserve electricity. Since 2002, Lifetime has worked with Rocky Mountain Power on their Wattsmart Projects. These projects are meant to use energy more efficiently in the community. In data collected since 2016, Lifetime has participated in Wattsmart projects that have resulted in 16,000,000 kilowatt hours saved, which is equivalent of more than 2,200 homes’ electricity use for a year. These projects are ongoing, and Lifetime will continue to participate.
Lifetime Products’ 670,000 square foot distribution warehouse was designed with clean energy in mind. The building’s roof was built to support solar power in the future. Lifetime Products’ St. George, Utah store is equipped with and uses solar energy to power the store.
As part of the Subscriber Solar Program with Rocky Mountain Power, Lifetime Products purchases renewable energy. In 2021, 25% of power used was sourced from renewable energy. Lifetime Products plans for this number to continue to grow as opportunities to purchase more power from renewable sources increase.
Decent Work and Economic Growth
Sustained and inclusive economic growth can drive progress, create decent jobs for all, and improve living standards. The economic and financial shocks associated with COVID-19—such as disruptions to industrial production, falling commodity prices, financial market volatility, and rising insecurity—are derailing the already tepid economic growth and compounding heightened risks from other factors. Lifetime Products is committed to providing opportunities for people within the endangered global economy.
The company’s mission statement sums it up well: “Lifetime will provide opportunities for our people by producing high quality, innovative products while growing profitably.” Lifetime’s goal is, and has always been, to create affordable products with quality, strength, and durability. They do this by growing profitably and providing opportunities for employees through diversification, entering new product categories, expanding market share, and constantly improving and innovating. Lifetime shares value with consumers while lowering costs.
For Lifetime, it’s about more than just quality products. It’s about being a quality company. Lifetime is a world-trusted brand and is of great value to consumers for many reasons. Lifetime treats employees, customers, and suppliers with respect, honesty, and integrity. Lifetime strives to promote from within whenever possible, giving employees greater opportunities for progression. Lifetime understands the importance of power found in unified teamwork, and they work to succeed as a group, not just as individuals. Lifetime is a company with passion to do things the best way, because it’s the right thing to do.
Industry Innovation and Infrastructure
Inclusive and sustainable industrialization, together with innovation and infrastructure, can unleash dynamic and competitive economic forces that generate employment and income. They play a key role in introducing and promoting new technologies, facilitating international trade, and enabling the efficient use of resources.
Global manufacturing growth has been steadily declining, even before the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic is hitting manufacturing industries hard and causing disruptions in global value chains and the supply of products. Innovation and technological progress are key to finding lasting solutions to both economic and environmental challenges, such as increased resource and energy efficiency. Lifetime is continually improving processes and equipment to design and manufacture products more efficiently.
Lifetime Products are built to last for decades—they are not single use, and won’t end up in the landfill after a short time. This focus permeates throughout all processes, and inspires the company to improve and innovate in product design, manufacturing, and more.
Responsible Consumption and Production
Worldwide consumption and production—a driving force of the global economy—rest on the use of the natural environment and resources in a way that continues to have destructive impacts on the planet. Sustainable consumption and production is about doing more and better with less. Lifetime strives to find new and innovative ways to produce products, as well as reuse or dispose of waste in an environmentally friendly way.
Every major manufacturing company has to deal with the challenges of disposing waste. As Lifetime has grown, the company has evolved and improved processes to dispose of waste in an environmentally conscious way, while also finding means to eliminate the creation of waste altogether. Lifetime’s core materials for products are High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE, one of the easiest types of plastic polymers to recycle) and steel. Both materials go through extensive processes that are continually being improved to be more efficient—in turn eliminating waste.
Blow molding machines produce flash, which is excess plastic outside of the product. (For those not familiar, blow molding is the forming of a hollow object by inflating or blowing a thermoplastic molten tube called a “parison” in the shape of a mold cavity. The process consists of extruding or “dropping” a parison on which female mold halves are closed. The female mold halves contain the shape of the product to be produced.) The flash is cut or pulled off the product once it is out of the blow molding machines and then placed on a conveyer belt to be reground and reused back into the blow molding process. Regrinding is a very effective process of sustainably dealing with waste; currently, 99.5% of plastic waste is recycled back into the processes.
Lifetime Products’ metals facility also uses similar sustainability practices. In the mills, any “scrap” metal that remains after producing parts needed for products is compacted and recycled. Another effort to eliminate waste in the metals department is the closed-loop system for dealing with coolant used on tube mill and roll form machines. The coolant is collected in a reservoir and skimmed, then tested to make sure the mixture is correct. Once the mixture is confirmed, the coolant can be reused in the system. Between our plastic and steel efforts, Lifetime is at almost a 100% recycle rate for raw materials, eliminating the need to dispose of these as waste.
In addition to the processes in the blow molding building and the steel mill, Lifetime bails and recycles all corrugate that is used in packaging. Lifetime’s packaging engineers are continually finding more sustainable packaging materials, and removing materials like foam and PVC.
Lifetime also repairs and reuses pallets. The company has a team whose focus is to rebuild and reuse old pallets rather than sending them to the trash. Since 2011, Lifetime has repaired and reused over 85,000 pallets that would have otherwise been disposed of. This equates to an estimated 21,000 trees saved. Any pallets that are unable to be repaired or reused are sent to Central Davis Sewer District where they repurpose them rather than throwing them away.