Reduce Plastic


Love Bamboo

Why Bamboo?

We’re all about Bamboo. A natural marvel with qualities that mirror our own values and show us a path to a sustainable future. It is the most ethical alternative to environmentally damaging plastics, and as a company, we have therefore pledged to become single-use plastic free.

Bamboo is a visual reminder of our purpose and our own internal behavioural values. Bamboo is strong yet flexible, essential qualities for a recruiter who goes the extra mile to really find people and companies that fit together naturally. Strong: it may just be the strongest stuff on our planet as it has greater tensile strength than steel, and withstands compression better than concrete. While flexible: even Bruce Lee once said “notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo survives by bending with the wind”.

While in its natural living state the vibrant green of Bamboo, matches our very own brand colour, it is also believed to be lucky and hold wise energy.

Some say we make our own luck but, if there’s any on offer, we’ll take it. Bamboo is said to bring health, love, and luck to whoever possesses the plant. It has been used for over 5,000 years in the practice of Feng Shui and we hope to pass that luck on to candidates and clients every day.

SF Bamboo Medium Bamboo Stamp Bamboo Leaves

Notice that the stiffest tree is most easily cracked, while the bamboo survives by bending with the wind.

Bruce Lee
Our Values
Our Values
Our Values
Our Values
Our Values

Be Collaborative.

Our people are our greatest assets, made even greater by teamwork.

One piece of bamboo, on its own, is sturdy enough, but structures made from many pieces are incredibly robust. Bamboo bridges in China have been built to consistently support more than 16 tons.

Together, we are strong.

Be Insightful.

Deep knowledge and understanding leads to the precise judgment required to make the best decisions.

Bamboo is about much more than what you see on the surface. The deeper you look, the more you find out about this incredible natural resource. Like the fact that Bamboo absorbs four times as much carbon as hardwood trees, and then generates up to 35 percent more oxygen to boot.

Be Pioneering.

We are not afraid to be different. A trailblazing spirit helps us to stay ahead of the game.

Bamboo is a trailblazer. It has been a key component of some truly ground breaking inventions over the years. Bamboo was used to make the filament in Thomas Edison’s first mass-produced electric light bulb and the needle in Alexander Graham Bell’s phonograph too.

Be Human.

We are friendly, honest and caring.

Bamboo has been a useful resource to humans for over 5,000 years. From bows and arrows to kitchenware, medicine to tissue paper, even bicycles and bedding. That looks set to continue as we strive to preserve our planet for future generations, looking for alternatives to damaging man-made materials like plastic. Read more on that below!

Be The Best.

Every single day.

Bamboo may be the strongest stuff on our planet. It has greater tensile strength (or resistance to being pulled apart) than steel, and it withstands compression better than concrete. Fact.

Bamboo is amazing. But don’t just take our word for it.

  1. Bamboo is the fastest growing plant of the planet. It can grow 3 feet in height in 24 hours under appropriate climate conditions
  2. Bamboo releases 30% more oxygen into the atmosphere and absorbs more carbon dioxide compared to other plants. Because of these features, bamboo greatly decreases the amount of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere and cleans the air.
  3. Bamboo does not require fertilisers for optimal growth. Discarded leaves of bamboo provide all the nutrients it requires when they start to decompose.
  4. Bamboo has stronger structure than steel, is widely used in the construction industry and in the manufacture of floors, furniture, house walls, skateboards, bicycle frames and helmets.
  5. Thomas Edison discovered that a carbonised bamboo filament in a light bulb could last over 1,200 hours, which led to the start of large-scale light bulb manufacture in the year 1880.
  6. Bamboo is highly versatile and can grow in all sorts of climate zones and soil types where other crops fail.
  7. Alexander Graham Bell used a sharpened bamboo sliver as his first phonograph needle, patented on 12 November 1907.
  8. Bamboo contains a natural bio-agent known as Bamboo Kun, making it naturally anti-bacterial. It is virtually never eaten by pests or infected with pathogens as a result.
  9. Every part of the bamboo plant can be utilised in one way or another with zero waste. At end of life, it’s also 100% recyclable.
  10. Bamboo can survive more than 120 years in the wild. If you're waiting for bamboo to flower, then you might wait a long time. Some species of bamboo do bloom, but only after 65 or 120 years.
  11. Lucky for some, bamboo is said to bring health, love, and luck to whoever possesses the plant. It has been used for 5,000 years in the practice of Feng Shui.

Bamboo is said to bring health, love and luck to whoever possesses the plant. It has long been believed to carry wise energy.

See Bamboo as part of our brand launch...
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See Bamboo as part of our brand launch...

Reduce Plastic. Love Bamboo.


“Everyone at SF have pledged to be single-use plastic free.”

With ethics in mind, bamboo shows us a path to a sustainable future. As we strive to preserve our planet for future generations, we seek alternatives to damaging man-made materials like plastic. Recyclable and biodegradable, bamboo renews itself within weeks making it an ideal replacement for many plastic items that, when disposed of irresponsibly, cause such harm. It is even a more sustainable material for paper, growing back in weeks, where a tree takes decades.

Everyone in the SF team is fully behind our move toward becoming a plastic-free business. Our goal is to influence the candidates we place, the companies we place them with, and the cities around us. We’ve even replaced all of our client gifting with mostly Bamboo (but certainly plastic-free) alternative products. Reusable drinking vessels are provided to all, plastic packaging is banned from deliveries and all bin liners are compostable.

Why are SF so against plastic

Of course we’ve all seen the horrible images of turtles and fish with plastic waste wrapped around them. Here in Birmingham, that can sometimes feel like a million miles away from us. However, all plastic breaks down over time into microscopic particles that we all can’t see. Whether travelling the waterways all the way from the Midlands, to the water that the fish we eat take in, or are discarded here and broken down into our soil or even washed off clothes by our washing machines, it is all around us. Plastics are even absorbed into our eco-system.

They are increasingly in the food we eat, the water we drink and are even believed to be airborne and being inhaled into our bodies. Over 80% of tap water samples tested contain plastic particles. Research has only just begun into the effects of this on all of us, but there is a lot of growing concern that this could be a cause of diseases worldwide like cancer.

In the UK alone, more than 5 million tonnes of plastic are consumed each year, of which only an estimated one-quarter is recycled. Living organisms can be harmed either by mechanical effects, such as entanglement in plastic objects, problems related to ingestion of plastic waste, or through exposure to chemicals within plastics that interfere with their physiology.

We humans are also affected by plastic pollution, such as the disruption of various hormonal mechanisms. This large amount of plastic waste inevitably enters the environment, with studies suggesting that the bodies of 90% of seabirds contain plastic debris. Some researchers suggest that by 2050 there could be more plastic than fish in the oceans by weight.

It's time that we all played our part. No matter how small an affect you think you’ll have or how far away you are from the seaside, it is a collective effort.


Are you and your company doing enough?

  • Can you audit your current plastic use?
  • Have you recently looked at new and better ways to recycle more?
  • Can you ask suppliers for plastic wrap-free packaging before ordering and not just accept what is given?
  • Refuse business cards being sent in plastic boxes, use shredded paper instead of bubble wrap, can you ban using laminating machines perhaps?
  • Instruct cleaners to reduce the number of bin bags in the office or use compostable ones?
  • Could you ban employees from bringing single use water bottles or plastic cutlery onto your premises?