Friday, March 20, 2009

Buy Land



howies

Added later
I found something on the made in Fiji in howies' spring catalogue:

Back in 2000, I fell in love with Merino. I loved its function, its quality and
most of all that nature provided it. And because it came from the land, one day after it had come to the end of its day, it could return to the land too. I was sold. I still am.

It was my answer to all those petro-chemical base layers out there, which I know from using them, just don’t do what the packaging says they do. (Nice packaging though.)

Around a year ago, we started a project to find out what the footprint of each of
our products was. David Hicks sat in front of a computer collating the data, and also working out what it meant. To find out the truths and not just what we had assumed.

And the truth of it is we didn’t like some of the results.

Moving the production of Merino from New Zealand to Fiji a couple of years ago to save a few pennies had increased our carbon footprint many fold. And we didn’t even know.

What we had not been aware of was that the fibre goes from New Zealand to China by boat to be made into yarn, and then the yarn goes back on the boat to New Zealand to be made into fabric. Then it goes off to Fiji to be made into our garments. Once made it then goes back to New Zealand before it is flown onto LA. Then to London. Then finally to Cardigan. No matter how you looked at it, it didn’t make for good reading.

That said, Merino is a truly great product. The best there is.

And because we use the highest grade that we can find, ours has a great reputation. And regularly wins the awards against all the big boys.

But making it right now in Fiji doesn’t fit with our aim to produce the lowest impact clothing that we can. That hurts. But the truth isn’t always what you want it to be. So we have to change.

So right now, we are looking into spinning the yarn in New Zealand and making the garment there. If we can’t, then it makes more sense to make the garment in China rather than Fiji. Doing that would mean each Merino product would travel 17,181 km less miles per garment. And this would cut our carbon footprint down by 95% (down to 0.12kg).

Only when you can measure something can you improve it. A hard lesson learnt.

7 comments:

Mickle in NZ said...

Whose land, huh?

Hmmm, the size would fit, but it is just not my colour.

Yes, of course made in Fiji - labour heaps cheaper than here. At least is not made in China!

Does look like it would be soft to wear against the skin.

Mickle in NZ said...

Or even Who's land. I must study your new blog - might learn how to offend using multiple languages.

Of course care and huggles, Mickle xxx

Expat Traveler said...

very interesting... Heard there was an earthquake which sprung a small tsunami... don't ask me how that is possible to not have a big one..

Love the photo!!!!

Sure made me interested in finding out what you were speaking about!

gomad.ch said...

Mickle, my Russian teacher used to swear in German. She always forgot that I understand that. Her father was a General in the Red Army stationed in Eastern Germany. Swearing in German was all she learned there.

My favourite four-letter word in German is Wixer. It is pronounced similar as the female fox and its English equivalent starts with the same consonant.

Mickle in NZ said...

Ah, trans tasman netball set up from last winter, Melbourne team = The Vixons.

New Zealand doesn't have any foxes or wolves, bears or snakes - illegal to bring any in.

Word stuff geting weird - WV = unitidal

gomad.ch said...

Mickle, my christian name means bear. It' looks like I'm not very welcomed down there.

Mickle in NZ said...

Dear Urs

NZ, Aotearoa, never had bears.

When the first humans emigrated here (700 to 1300 years ago - exact timimg disputed) the only mammals already present were bats - small, nocternal, kind of harmless.


European (eg Brit) settlers introduced all sorts of not needed beasties - rabbits, stoats, ferrets, weasels, hedgehogs, cats (yes, I know), dogs, Aussie possums...........sparrows, blackbirds, starlings, thrushes, nasty magpies, city pidgeons (rats with wings), ship rats, mice.....

Now we have a Govt Department trying to undo the damage........

There are some lovely Asian Sun bears in our (helping to protect/breed species) Zoos. And I still have the teddybear my dear Uncle DAvid (also my Godfather) gave me for my 1st birthday. bear is minus face (loved off), and David died in his mid fifties back in the mid to late 1980s.

Idea of Urs's is lovely, and happy for you to be here one day, just not any actual bears (biosecurity rules would stop any bears entering)

now come on - think happy, happy April holiday.

I'm off to sleep at last. Enjoy your weekend, and love to you and your gorgeous Husband