Patagonia is a outdoor clothing company that is dedicated to their environmental impact with their quality of clothing, initiative to protect and rebuild the environment, use ethically sourced and recycled materials, and maintain factories and relationships with their workers that are healthy. Spanning more than 70 stores in more than ten countries across five continents, this company is devoted to its transparency to its public about their impact. There is much information available to the consumer about their sustainability practices and manufacturing process. Patagonia is also open to offering information on their future goals impacting and preserving the environment.
According to their website, the Nano Puff Jacket, “uses incredibly lightweight and highly compressible 60-g PrimaLoft Gold Insulation Eco 100% postconsumer recycled polyester with P.U.R.E (Produced Using Reduced Emissions) technology wrapped in a 100% recycled polyester shell and lining.” On their website, there is a lot that Patagonia offers to the public. The fabric is completely recycled shell fabric, and the insulation is also completely recycled. It is clear that Patagonia is devoted to sustainability and recycling. With this transparency, Patagonia is able to give their consumers the ability to research their products and understand their own intake.
The recycled polyester helps to lessen humanity’s dependence on virgin petroleum-based materials, something that contributes directly to the sustainability of the product. By utilizing recycled polyester, they can promote the different recycling streams for unwearable polyester clothing. Not only is this recycled polyester being used in their Nano Puff Jacket, it actually encompasses 84% of their polyester fabrics that they have used this past season. Through this, they have been able to reduce their CO2 emissions by 14% compared to virgin polyester fabrics, amounting to more than 3.1 million pounds of CO2 emissions. It is clear that the material of the Nano Puff Jacket is sustainable, and Patagonoia is working hard and committed to creating a cycle of materials being used. They are even looking to find more options for recycled materials, including ocean plastics and chemical recycling technology.
The finish that is added to the jacket is a DWR (durable water repellent) finish that utilizes non fluorinated DWR, a specific chemical compound that does not rely on fluorine. When bonded to carbon, this is a compound that does not degrade and persist in the environment. It is a work in progress as they are striving to convert to a non-PFC DWR finish so that the chemicals are less impactful. Because of this, the product itself is not as sustainable, but Patagonia is transparent and open about where they are, their impact, and what they are doing in order to become better.
Because of how detailed and transparent Patagonia is with their products, they are able to clearly show their commitment to sustainability and how this jacket is one of the steps in that direction. They have earned 2.75 for this section.
This particular product is created in Vietnam.
Although Patagonia is utilizing recycled materials, it is known that the manufacturing process for these materials can utilize a lot of energy and water. It also emits very intense greenhouse gases. By using as many virgin materials as possible, Patagonia is making strides in changing their impact. There is not much information on this jacket itself, but a lot of information about general products that Patagonia sells and how it is made.
The Nano Puff Jacket also utilizes Patagonia’s P.U.R.E. technology. This is a newer and advanced insulation-manufacturing technology. This technology is particularly notable because of how it removes the need for heat to melt bonding fibers, reducing the need for energy use and carbon emissions through the manufacturing process. By using the P.U.R.E. technology, Patagonia has been able to reduce 52% of the footprint of the insulation in the Nano Puff jacket. It does not stop there. Patagonia has also committed to integrate innovations similar to this technology that will reduce emissions and energy use. Patagonia is actively using and looking for sustainable methods to create their products.
The actual manufacturing process was rather small, only compared to the other sections about this product. While less than the others, it was still much information. I was able to really understand how they are impacting the environment and their intentions and goals with it all. Because of this as well as what they are doing well, they have earned a 2 for this section. It is lower because of how the recycled materials manufacturing process can have such an impact on the environment.
It is made in Vietnam.
There is an explicit section that is “How it’s made”, and it dives deeply into the process of manufacturing the Nano Puff Jacket and how the workers are treated. They acknowledge that apparel workers are some of the lowest paid people in the world, and on their website, Patagonia has lengthy information on how they plan on tackling this. Patagonia does not own any factories, and because of this, they have limited control over what the workers are receiving in compensation. Through Fair Trade, they are able to give the workers massive benefits that ultimately better their quality of life. They have more than 72,000 workers that are supported by their Fair Trade program. The extra money that is obtained through Fair trade goes directly to the workers at the factory. Through the program, the workers have the freedom of choice and variety of that choice depending on how the extra money is used. The program also promotes worker health and safety as well as social and environmental compliance.
Patagonia recognizes a future goal of theirs to be that they can find a permanent solution to ensure all workers who make their clothing are able to earn a living wage, something they recognize as a basic human right along with the United Nations and its International Labour Organization.
Because of the transparency and the clear goal of working for living wage and providing a safe environment for their workers however not encompassing all of their workers, Patagonia has earned a 2.5 for this section.
https://www.patagonia.com/product/womens-nano-puff-jacket/84217.html?dwvar_84217_color=STBL&cgid=jackets [Patagonia Women’s Nano Puff Jacket]
https://www.patagonia.com/product/mens-nano-puff-jacket/84212.html?dwvar_84212_color=CTRB&cgid=jackets [Patagonia Men’s Nano Puff Jacket]
https://www.patagonia.com/our-footprint/bluesign.html [how Patagonia treats their workers, environment, and customers]
https://www.patagonia.com/stories/patagonia-clothing-made-where-how-why/story-18467.html [the process of Patagonia’s clothing production]
https://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2015/06/patagonia-labor-clothing-factory-exploitation/394658/ [Patagonia and exploited labor]
https://www.patagonia.com/our-footprint/living-wage.html [Patagonia’s commitment to a living wage]
https://www.patagonia.com/our-footprint/working-with-factories.html [Patagonia’s relationship with factories]
https://www.patagonia.com/where-we-do-business/owned-and-operated.html [Patagonia owned and operated]
https://www.patagonia.com/our-footprint/primaloft-pure.html [PURE insulation technology]
https://www.patagonia.com/our-footprint/recycled-polyester.html [recycled polyester]