Learning about sustainable buying

Do you want to buy sustainably?

 

It’s the right thing to do. As a retailer, our first and foremost task

is to encourage responsible production by our brands.

 

How are we doing that?

With each collaboration, the new brand signs a code of conduct that guarantees the correct terms and conditions of employment and that checks the label standards and its affiliated organisations (such as BSCI, FWF, etc.).

We take a critical look and question the brands about their evolution in terms of sustainable efforts. And we often add critical questions that have been posed by our customers.

During purchasing negotiations for a new season, we ask about the biological and recycled aspects of the collection.

But it is also our role to clearly inform you about the different labels you will find in the ranges we offer. Labels that stand for sustainable production and ecological materials. But what does all that mean?

A guide to responsible and ecological buying can be found below. This is how we reach a sustainable society, step by step. Here’s a good start: take care of the outside environment every day. And enjoy it too. After all, adventure is everywhere.

 


The story behind every label

Who, what, how and why? Each ecolabel has its own reason for existence.

The story and meaning behind each quality mark can be found below.

Bluesign


The Bluesign label has established value in our outdoor department. It is based on powerful principles on how to become an ecologically responsible product. Optimised production processes result in fewer raw materials and reduced energy waste. Bluesign therefore accepts the huge responsibility for people and the environment. The label also imposes strict standards in the battle against water pollution. Efficient waste water cleaning systems are a good example of this.

 

What about CO2 emissions? Well, unfortunately this is inevitable in textile production. But through the use of unprocessed materials and chemicals, among other things, Bluesign is committed to purifying these emissions. Finally, the label prides itself in providing a good working environment. As such, it can guarantee the safety and health of all employees.


Fair Wear Foundation


The Fair Wear Foundation is not a label, it is a multi-stakeholder initiative. The goal? To improve working conditions throughout the production chain. To achieve that, this social initiative works with the textile sector. Brands and companies that become members of the Fair Wear Foundation can use the label as recognition. This differs from how a product label works. Simply because the initiative cannot guarantee all labelled products meet all their criteria.

The guarantees it strictly monitors are as follows:

 

• Free choice of labour
• Non-discrimination
• Prohibition of child labour or exploitation
• The right to freedom of association and collective bargaining
• Safe and hygienic working conditions
• Legally binding employment contracts
• Payment of correct wages with a prohibition on excessively long working days


GOTS – Global Organic Textile Standard


This environmental label indicates that the textile fibre of the used fabric comes from biological agriculture. GOTS ensures no harmful substances are used in the production of the clothing. In addition, it pays special attention to water and energy consumption, as well as waste management. And more: working conditions within textile processing itself are also important.

Oeko-Tex© Standard 100


This label guarantees that the textile product does not contain any harmful substances. Therefore, it examines both natural and synthetic fibres. Oeko-Tex 100 does not take the origin of textiles into account. This means they do not distinguish between biological and non-biological fabrics.

RDS - Responsible Down Standard


This label supports the improvement of animal welfare in the down industry. RDS assures us that the down and feathers used in our coats come from animals that have not suffered. Companies can choose to certify their products with RDS. The label offers the following guarantees:

 

• Live plucking of poultry is prohibited
• Forced or excessive feeding is prohibited
• RDS down and feathers are clearly labelled
• Each stage in the supply chain is monitored by an external certification organisation
• Only products with 100%-certified down and feathers bear the RDS label.


Fairtrade


Fairtrade is an international label for fair trade. It is based on justice, respect and equality. Did you know that Fairtrade mainly focuses on small farmers in southern developing countries? These farmers can barely make ends meet with the income they receive for their cotton products. And since they do not have good representation, poverty is a pitiful consequence. Fairtrade wants to tackle this unfairness and low salaries: If you buy a product that bears the Fairtrade logo, you help ensure better living and working conditions. This means farmers not only receive a higher and more stable income, but also receive premiums. In doing so, they can invest in community projects.


Sustainable materials, sustainable buying

Recycled materials


Did you know many of our brands use recycled materials? For example, they can process PET bottles for use in their jackets. Brands like Jack Wolfskin, Vaude, The North Face, Name It, Patagonia and O'Neill are taking the lead in this. We are also doing this with our own house brand – Ayacucho. We work with Repreve, a yarn made from recycled plastic bottles. As a result, these products are clearly labelled with the Repreve label.


PFC-Free


PFC-free clothing does not contain fluorocarbons. After all, these chemicals are harmful to people and the environment. Not only are they carcinogenic, they also take a very long time to degrade. And as an outdoor brand, we definitely want to take good care of the great outdoors. Our vision is, of course, accompanied by exceptional quality. For example, an alternative method has been used to make PFC-free coatings water-repellent or waterproof. Bionic Eco Finish is a good example of this.


Organic, biological & environmentally friendly


“Biological” and “organic” mean the same thing: the product or raw material in question is the result of biological farming. Strict environmental and animal welfare rules are applied. This means no pesticides, no harmful substances in the colouring process, and material that is biodegradable. The above-mentioned RDS and GOTS labels comply with this.

 

Environmentally friendly is therefore organic and biological. In a nutshell, it means the product does not pollute the environment of people, animals and plants during production and use.

 

A good purchasing tip for a biological natural yarn is Tencel: This natural fibre comes from wood pulp made from eucalyptus trees. This makes the fabric much more durable than cotton. The fabric is moisture-regulating, very strong, and soft to the touch. What’s more, Tencel even carries the European Ecolabel!


Vegan


A product is considered to be vegan if it is 100% animal friendly. This means, no animals were involved in the production process at any time. No material is of animal origin, and none of the material has been tested on animals.


Community labeled


There is no official label for community support and funds. Socially responsible brands interpret this in their own way in the form of an explanation or a type of quality mark. It’s their way of giving something back to the community. Brands often do this at the level of care, education and the environment. In addition, they ensure vulnerable people are given extra opportunities, or they compensate for their impact on the environment by supporting green projects. Would you like to know which brands are progressive in this area? We can recommend such brands as Patagonia, Ayacucho and Nosho. Isn't it great to know these strong brands are generating lots of funds for a good cause? And even more: that you are directly contributing to this with your purchase?

Recycled materials


Did you know many of our brands use recycled materials? For example, they can process PET bottles for use in their jackets. Brands like Jack Wolfskin, Vaude, The North Face, Name It, Patagonia and O'Neill are taking the lead in this. We are also doing this with our own house brand – Ayacucho. We work with Repreve, a yarn made from recycled plastic bottles. As a result, these products are clearly labelled with the Repreve label.


PFC-Free


PFC-free clothing does not contain fluorocarbons. After all, these chemicals are harmful to people and the environment. Not only are they carcinogenic, they also take a very long time to degrade. And as an outdoor brand, we definitely want to take good care of the great outdoors. Our vision is, of course, accompanied by exceptional quality. For example, an alternative method has been used to make PFC-free coatings water-repellent or waterproof. Bionic Eco Finish is a good example of this.


Organic, biological & environmentally friendly


“Biological” and “organic” mean the same thing: the product or raw material in question is the result of biological farming. Strict environmental and animal welfare rules are applied. This means no pesticides, no harmful substances in the colouring process, and material that is biodegradable. The above-mentioned RDS and GOTS labels comply with this.

 

Environmentally friendly is therefore organic and biological. In a nutshell, it means the product does not pollute the environment of people, animals and plants during production and use.

 

A good purchasing tip for a biological natural yarn is Tencel: This natural fibre comes from wood pulp made from eucalyptus trees. This makes the fabric much more durable than cotton. The fabric is moisture-regulating, very strong, and soft to the touch. What’s more, Tencel even carries the European Ecolabel!


Vegan


A product is considered to be vegan if it is 100% animal friendly. This means, no animals were involved in the production process at any time. No material is of animal origin, and none of the material has been tested on animals.


Community labeled


There is no official label for community support and funds. Socially responsible brands interpret this in their own way in the form of an explanation or a type of quality mark. It’s their way of giving something back to the community. Brands often do this at the level of care, education and the environment. In addition, they ensure vulnerable people are given extra opportunities, or they compensate for their impact on the environment by supporting green projects. Would you like to know which brands are progressive in this area? We can recommend such brands as Patagonia, Ayacucho and Nosho. Isn't it great to know these strong brands are generating lots of funds for a good cause? And even more: that you are directly contributing to this with your purchase?

Ayacucho, our own brand, with production from A to Z.

 

Ayacucho currently has no official labels yet, but does use Repreve, Tencel, PFC-free coatings where possible, RDS down and BSCI cotton. All the information about the labels can be found on the product tag. And on this guide page, of course.

 

The Ayacucho collection is produced at various production sites. Our suppliers have signed the BSCI guarantee statement. Our buyers also visit our suppliers twice a year for inspection. What if a supplier can't sign a BSCI? Then there is simply no collaboration.

Discover the Ayacucho collection

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