Patagonia is the first major US company to initiate sourcing organic cotton for their shirts, and they did so in 1996. In the early 1990’s, Patagonia issued am R&D study to look at the environmental impacts of all their fabrics and processing. Much to their surprise, cotton came out the worst. As a result, Patagonia took significant steps toward making the same products (at almost the same price) with organic fibers, and eliminating damaging pesticide and excessive water use in the process.
Interestingly, this was not a demand by Patagonia’s customers, it came from within management. In fact, Patagonia did not aggressively market the organic fibers much at that time, since their customers were not much concerned with the fabrics’ source at the time. However, since then, more than a handful of consumers and companies are now cognizant of and interested in where and how fabrics are sourced. Patagonia has been and continues to be a true pioneer in the green apparel space. To learn more about their steps toward sourcing organic cotton, check out the Footprint Chronicles at Patagonia.
This week’s Quiz Winner is ricepaperslidingdoor. Congratulations ricepapersldingdoor!
Honorable mention goes to Kelven Goodridge who guessed American Apparel in 2003.
Stay tuned for the next quiz question!