As a member of the Fair Trade Federation, we use their nine guiding Fair Trade Principles to guide our business practices. This ensures that our actions are always in line with our ethos of putting the wellbeing of the makers at the forefront. However, fair trade isn’t concerned exclusively with social justice, it also looks at lessening our environmental impact, as the two issues are inextricably interconnected. One of the nine Fair Trade Federation Principles is:
Cultivate Environmental Stewardship by encouraging responsible use of resources and eco-friendly production. FTF members reduce, reuse, reclaim, and recycle materials whenever possible.
We strive to lessen our environmental impact through every step of the production and shipping process. Here are three ways in which we adhere to the ethos of sustainability.
1. Wool is a sustainable fiber
The vast majority of the goods we produce are made primarily with wool. As a natural part of the carbon cycle, wool is one of earth’s most sustainable materials. Energy from plants is converted to wool through the sheep, and the sheep’s manure helps more plants grow. This is a natural and renewable process that is gentle on the animals, and the environment.
In addition to the light footprint of wool’s creation, it is a quality and long-lasting fiber, which means that wool lasts longer and require less laundering than other textiles. Wool is also one of the most recycled fibers, and eventually, at the end of its life, it is one of the most biodegradable.
2. Hand-weaving is the most carbon-neutral way to produce fashion materials
Our products are all handmade throughout the entire process. From preparing and dyeing the wool, to hand-weaving, and finally to sewing and assembly. Compared to industrial and factory production, the waste produced in their creation is negligible.
3. Environmentally-friendly shipping materials
As a fair trade brand, with a goal of bringing Oaxacan goods to markets outside of Mexico in order to expand economic opportunities for the makers, shipping is a required part of our business model. In an effort to lessen the environmental impact of bringing the goods to you, we use sustainable shipping materials.
For protection, our bags are first wrapped in a 100% recyclable protective bag from EcoEnclose. Then they are shipped on 100% compostable poly mailers from NoIssu. These mailers are made from plant materials, such as corn and wheat straw. They break down in 90-180 days, and leave no harmful residues behind.
No production method is zero waste, but through the materials we use, the processes with which we manufacture, and the materials we ship with, we endeavor to leave the lightest environmental footprint possible.
What aspect of sustainability is most important to you?