This week has been designated National Wildlife Week by the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) and in honor of the event, Proozy has chosen to highlight efforts by select brands we offer to either benefit or make as little impact as possible on our big blue earth.
1. Granite Gear
A company born from a camping trip through the Boundary Waters in 1986, Granite Gear specializes in outdoor equipment like backpacks, canoe gear, and other essential roughing-it accessories. From the get-go, the brand has been focused on the environment, and in 2017, they launched a program called Grounds Keepers.
From the Granite Gear Grounds Keepers webpage
Grounds Keepers is an initiative with the core principle of “leave it better” than you found it. Every year, a team of at least 15 hikers are sent out with a clean-up kit to travel some of America’s most popular trails and pick up what they can. As of April 2022, over 1,100 pounds of trash have been removed from trails so far!
To see updates, you can check out the Grounds Keepers Instagram.
2. Free People
Started in the early 1970s with a heavy focus on bohemian style and culture, Free People has cultivated sustainability practices that are to be admired. Their efforts fall under an umbrella called Care Free People (FP), which has several different facets.
From a product side, they offer an entire shop of eco-conscious designs that are either made from a blend of recycled materials, vintage looks, or artisan-made wear.
With regards to company-wide eco-friendly business decisions, the Care Free People program has lead to some noteworthy examples, which include fabrication standards that have saved over 4 million liters of water per production season and over 400,000 kg of CO2 saved from the atmosphere. In addition to that, a dedication to circularity over fast fashion sees the company donate unsold wholesale to non-profit organizations, with over 100,000 units diverted from landfills this year alone so far.
From the Free People Care FP page
Dive into additional environmental efforts by the Free People here!
3. Jack Wolfskin
A German outdoor wear and accessory juggernaut, Jack Wolfskin was founded in 1981. The brand is immensely popular with both hikers, mountaineers, and among the urban German wilderness chic set.
In 2018, Jack Wolfskin was the first clothing manufacturer to launch a 100% recycled weather protection gear with their Texapore Ecosphere Jacket, which they then followed up with by creating 100% recycled fleece fabrics and synthetic paddings.
This is just the beginning of a laundry list of sustainable business practices Jack Wolfskin has either pioneered or adopted.
Notably, in the summer of 2019, the brand successfully eliminated the usage of PFC in all of their water- and weather-proof gear. PFCs are an industry standard group of waterproofing chemicals that are suspected of being a human carcinogen.
From the Jack Wolfskin PFC Info page
Get the full story on Jack Wolfskin’s numerous efforts to protect the environment in their sustainability book, available to read here.
4. Hydro Flask
Hydro Flask is a brand literally born out of a desire to do what you can on an individual level to reduce waste and benefit the environment.
In 2009, creator Travis Rorbach decided to make the switch from plastic, single use water bottles to a reusable metal one, but encountered problem after problem with the brands of bottles he tried out. The problems were so numerous and consistent he decided then to make his own metal water bottle — and Hydro Flask was born.
As you might expect from a brand that creates products to reduce plastic waste, Hydro Flask has its own programs and movements geared towards the overarching benefit of the environment.
From Hydro Flask's Parks For All page
One prime example would be their Parks For All program, which supports nonprofit organizations focused on building, maintaining, restoring, and providing more equitable access to parks. So far, 2.5 million dollars have been donated in support of parks around the United States.
Launched in 1974, Osprey was founded because creator Mike Pfotenhauer was dissatisfied with the quality of his backpacking equipment. Like others in this list, his response was “fine, I’ll make my own.”
From the get-go, Osprey and the great outdoors have gone hand-in-hand, and the brand has implemented sustainability practices and formed partnerships with organizations that reflect that.
From Osprey's Sustainability page
With regards to materials, Osprey incorporates bluesign approved textiles, which means that the textile or fixture part is safe for the environment, the worker making it, and the consumer. They have also shifted to using 100% recycled or recyclable bags for shipping, as well as hangtags.
Read more about Osprey’s sustainability push here.
Are you getting out into the wild this week? Let us know what your favorite spring outdoor activities are in the comments!