The Current - July
You may or may not get as excited as us about using seaweed as a new alternative material, but when we heard that we could get hold of paper made from the brown and green slimy stuff we jumped at the chance!
A recent trip to London for the 10th Annual Future Fabric Expo setup by The Sustainable Angle gave us the opportunity to meet more people doing incredible work with seaweed, as well as hear inspirational talks and learn loads more about what really is happening in the fashion world.
One of the most unknown processes in clothing manufacturing is the dyeing and finishing. Currently, it's almost impossible not to use dyes and finishing that are not derived from fossil fuels. Although we're still a way off being able to use 100% seaweed for actual clothing, we are hoping to use a dye made from extracting colours from seaweed in a small batch of our T-shirts, please stay tuned for news on that as it develops.
Our future goals are to use seaweed, potentially harvested from seaweed farms here in the UK, to create fibres that can then be used to make our clothing and also our packaging. This will help achieve a truly circular supply chain in order to alleviate pressure on our already highly exploited ancient carbon rich forests. Nicole Rycroft (pictured below) from Canopy Planet highlighted these problems in her talk at The Future Fabrics Expo.
Forests that are destroyed to make wood pulp, mainly for packaging are under unsustainable demand. Recycled wood pulp is slightly better but it is now in such high demand that even more virgin wood pulp is needed for the supply. The recycling process also uses a chemical process and is energy intensive.
We have now sourced packaging which is made from seaweed byproduct (a wasted resource), not only does it not need any chemical treatment or land to grown on, it goes a lot further than wood. For just 1 tonne of seaweed used it saves 4 tonnes of trees from being felled, thereby alleviating even more pressure on forestry.
Also while at the Future Fabrics Expo, Adam was finally able to meet up with the owners of Post Carbon Lab, an ingenious and futuristic science led team who we've been in talks with about a very different collaboration, watch this space.
We also have further news from our EcoLab about our traceability project to show 100% transparency about our supply chain and all manufacturing processes. We will cover this in a separate blog, but this information is slowly coming together, which will be accessed via a QR code on the swing tags of all our T-shirts. Therefore anyone will be able to see the exact origins of all our supply chain and manufacturing.
Pre-orders for our T-shirts are available now, delivery will be early to mid August.