Hawke's Bay design studio David Trubridge has announced it will immediately withdraw six of its 13 remaining products with a high plastic content from production.

The remaining designs are planned to be phased out during 2019 and early 2020 as the last orders for the items are processed.

The company is prepared to take a hit on sales.

For company director David Trubridge it's disappointing to have to let these products go, but knows things have to change to reduce the environmental footprint of the company.


"The items being discontinued are close to my heart," Trubridge said.

"Despite this, we can't go on selling them and still claim we are doing all we can as a company to reduce our environmental footprint, but the time has come that we know we won't find a more eco-alternative to this plastic."

The plastic was the chosen product at the time due to the strength and features that the material possessed compared to environmentally friendly alternatives at the time.

"At the time we chose the Polycarbonate plastic due to its strength and the way it can diffuse light like rice paper," Trubridge said.

The bulk of the company's luminaires are made from sustainably managed bamboo plywood.

Rather than completely abandon the discontinued designs, Trubrige set his studio the task of designing new plywood pieces that take inspiration from these.

The results have led the company to find new ways of using plywood.

"We had to stockpile all our plastic waste and truck it to a recycling depot. Now our wood waste goes to a local timber mill for efficient incineration to generate electricity in its steam power turbines," Trubridge said.


He hopes his company's stand will lead to others jumping on board and finding new ways in which other designers can find a more environmentally friendly approach to their work.

"I'm hoping I can bring light to the use of plastic in industrial design. Designers must think about materiality and life-span. What are you designing? How long will it be relevant? What will happen to it when it's discarded?" Trubridge said.

"We are all responsible for the future."