Back to School: Sustainable Shopping at Target

Aug 17

It’s that time of year when parents and students are on the hunt for some much-needed school supplies. Here at Klee, we’re committed to helping you make sustainable choices to kick off the new school year. The good thing is, you don’t necessarily have to venture out far to make these choices. You can find sustainable products right at your neighborhood stores. So, we’re bringing you some tips on brands and items to look out for at some of our favorite, go-to retailers.

We’ll begin with Target. Target has been involved in some great initiatives that source sustainable products. They’re the first US retailer to introduce a chemical strategy, committed to bringing safety, health, and transparency to customers. From packaging goals to chemical strategy to their wellness icons, Target has been rolling out sustainable initiatives to bring better and smarter products. They’ve specifically implemented these into their owned-brand products which we’ll mention.

From paper to clothes to foods, we’ve got you covered.

Responsible Paper Products

Up & Up is one of Target’s owned-brands prioritized under the forest products policy. This policy entails increasing the amount of responsible wood, paper, paper-based packaging, and wood-based fiber.

To achieve this commitment, they’ve participated in the following certifications:

You’ll find these certification logos on the following Up & Up paper supplies:





Nothing says back to school like a fresh pack of pencils. Here’s our top picks for pencils made with a little extra knowledge and an eye for the future.

Smencils Scented Pencils

These fun no. 2 pencils are made from 100% recycled newspapers. Each pencil is also packaged in a recyclable plastic freshness tube.

Ticonderoga #2 Wooden Pencils


PEFC certified, these no. 2 pencils are produced with premium wood from certified sustainable wood sources.


Since July 2016, Target has helped recycle nearly 250 million plastic bottles across their exclusive clothing brands such as Cat & Jack and Universal Thread.

Cat & Jack

Cat & Jack uses Repreve recycled polyester, which is made from fibers that have been transformed from plastic bottles.

Universal Thread

Just launched this year, this new denim collection features selected styles made from recycled cotton. Their jeggings use Kitotex, a technology that uses Chitosan in the dyeing process to help reduce water, chemicals and energy consumption. A portion of the jeans have pockets made with Repreve recycled polyester.



PACT’s items (leggings, underwear, and tees) are made from 100% organic cotton and are fair trade certified. Read more about sustainable fashion: #LearnTheLabel: Breaking down the many meanings of eco-fashion


Wellness icons

Shop the labels! Closely aligned with our mission here at Klee, Target introduced wellness icons this past year to help customers make informed purchase choices when it comes to beauty, food, and nutrition products. You’ll find these icons located next the price tags while shopping at the store, or if you’re an online shopper, you can filter grocery items by icon.

Simply Balanced  


Target’s exclusive food collection, Simply Balanced, provides organic products made with no artificial flavors, artificial sweeteners, or trans fats. From eggs, to pasta, to fruit, there’s really nothing you can’t find for a happy stomach.

Archer Farms


From direct and fair trade coffee to their expansive assortment of nut blends and trail mixes, Target’s exclusive Archer Farms brand brings in natural and healthy products for those much needed energy fixes in between studies.


Target carries pre-owned, certified pre-owned, and refurbished tech gear. By purchasing these, not only do you save money, but the waste and resources that would be required to produce new products. 


Like shopping choices, it’s the small lifestyle changes that make a big difference for our planet. Every year, Target is working to provide sustainable choices across more products. Their progress is reported each year in the Corporate Social Responsibility Report. We’re thrilled to see a big retailer like Target put more time and effort into sustainability and we’re happy to reward their initiatives with our purchases. Did you know Target was so forward thinking? We’d love to hear your thoughts.

Klee Life