Earth Rated x Layer: fresh branding unleashing a better way to play
It’s clearly a dog’s life and the new generation of Earth Rated is all about sustainability, from minimalistic fonts and packaging to durable toys
Bringing a new air of fun and sustainability to dog products – design agency Layer led by Benjamin Hubert creates canine-friendly branding for Canada-based Earth Rated from sustainable packaging to products.
Born in 2010 to celebrate pet ownership and make life with dogs simpler and better, Earth Rated needed a refreshing playful identity to reflect its growing ambitions.
“Today the dog accessories and toy market is a crowded space – there are a lot of products available of mixed quality and usually overly or loudly designed. We’ve focused on crafting products that achieve a better standard of design, both more beautiful but also more useful and ergonomically beneficial for both pet and person!” shares Hubert.
Designed for long-lasting, stimulating and enjoyable play – among them are toys fabricated from natural rubber and new poop bags made from 65% post-consumer recycled plastic – which will give a second life to more than 5 million pounds of landfill-bound plastic every year.
To match the toys, the Earth Rated revamped brand identity balances restrained graphics with bold colors including pops of yellow – one of the few hues that are on the visible spectrum for dogs.
Their colors are youthful, uplifting and contemporary – fresh greens paired with vivid secondary shades.
Additionally, the brand mark is rendered in a minimalistic sans serif font with the silhouette of a dog and its wagging tail integrated into the negative spaces of the T and H.
Earth Rated originally launched with its flagship poop bags created from polybutylene adipate terephthalate (PBAT) – a biodegradable fossil plastic that can be broken down in an industrial composter in as little as 45 days, provided that the facility accepts pet waste.
They then went on to work with Layer to develop a new product that would have a lower environmental impact while using less virgin plastic – these newly launched sustainable bags are made predominantly from recycled plastic waste making them less resource-intensive.
“Over the lifecycle of the bags, this new material choice is more sustainable – they use less energy and are less reliant on fossil fuels because they’re not creating plastic from scratch!” he explains.
To enable easy disassembly and recycling once the product has reached the end of its life, the bags come in a refillable dispenser with a detachable silicone strap.
“The strap is made from silicone but is secured in a way that uses no glues, over-moulds, screws or permanent fixtures – both types of plastic are extremely easy to both assemble in production and separate at end of life!” he adds.
A similar philosophy was applied to the five dog toys, all created utilizing Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC)-certified natural rubber from Vietnam except for the frisbee, which is made from a recyclable thermoplastic elastomer (TPE).
Subtly reimagining classic typologies – the range further includes a chew toy embodying a twisted form for paws to grasp and a ball composed of two intersecting forms to create an unpredictable bounce pattern. Both the ball and the frisbee are finished in yellow – easy for dogs to see, catch and find in the grass.
“Dog and people ergonomics were key through the project – we designed from the outset with simple geometries, single materials and simple manufacturing processes that keeps costs down at scale, but challenged us to think of ways to improve product archetypes without adding extra complexity!” concludes Hubert.