Callaway Golf Bag

overall rating:



Lawrence Xing
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From their customer service page, Callaway makes a commitment to conducting sustainable business practices. A deeper dive into one of its brands, OGIO, which also produces golf bags does not indicate a similar commitment on its social responsibility page. This seems to be more consistent with Callaway's overall lack of attention to sustainable practices when it comes to producing their golf bags. Through my research, I found a company (Sun Mountain) that is currently producing golf bags from recycled materials, so change is definitely possible, it just depends on Callaway’s true commitment to long-term sustainability goals. 

What it's made of:


According to the Chicago Tribute, Callaway golf bags are usually produced from nylon or a nylon blend, with more expensive bags being made from leather or synthetic leather. While certain articles promote fun ways to reuse old golf bags, these are definitely not long-term sustainable materials. Nylon is produced from a highly-energy intensive process that requires coal and petroleum, neither of which are environmentally friendly. It also creates nitrous oxide as a by-product, which is a greenhouse gas that is 300 times more potent than carbon dioxide. Worst of all, there are no biodegradable types of nylon, so discarded Callaway golf bags could easily sit in landfills for hundreds of years. Similarly, leather is also a non-sustainable product, derived from its use of animals in the production process. In general, most golf bags also have plastic frames that are also known to be unsustainable material. From this analysis, I rated this section as a zero for the overall lack of attention to sustainability and in fact, for using extremely unsustainable materials to produce a golf bag. 

How it's made:


While it is very difficult to find information on how Callaway Golf bags are produced and golf bags in general for that matter, modern golf bags are generally designed for the comfortability and ease of golfers who prefer to carry their own bags. Traditional golf bags tended to be made from very heavy materials that created difficulty for golfers to carry their clubs. Thus, the need for much lighter materials, such as nylon was born. The construction of bags with nylon/leather skins and plastic frames/stands are all aimed directly towards making it easier and lighter for golfers to carry their clubs for the entirety of a round of golf. Another production factor for companies like Callaway is the appeal of design to golfers, such as different colors, branding, or pocket positions. However, neither of these general production considerations (construction or design appeal) are focused on sustainability. In particular, for a company like Callaway, which is at the forefront of the golf industry, profits are the driving force of how it produces its golf bags. This is why this section also scores a 0. 

Who makes it:


Callaway Golf bags, like many of their other products, are made in China manufacturing plants. Although this is a typical practice in many industries, it is surprising that Callaway actually made the shift from the U.S. to outsource their manufacturing rather recently. They cited international support of the brand as one of the main reasons, however, it is important to remember that the most common reason a company outsources manufacturing is from lowered costs. It is difficult to find out more information about Callaway manufacturing practices, however, they commit to human rights and supplier responsibility, which addresses some important sustainability goals from the UN SDGs such as #12: Responsible Consumption and Production. They also give specific instructions on how to contact them in a notice of violations, which is a plus. On a wider level, this section only gets half a point for its corporate social responsibility policies and commitments, however, there isn’t enough evidence of sustainable practices otherwise.