As part of its commitment to creating a more sustainable future, Ramblers Way Farm Inc of Kennebunk, Maine, has launched the first ever Cradle to Cradle (C2C) certified organic wool clothing line.
The collection offers 16 styles – ten for women and six for men – using the company’s ultra-lightweight organic wool jersey in six low impact colours and silk thread.
C2C Certified products are evaluated and optimised for human and environmental health, recyclability or compostability, renewable energy use, carbon management, water stewardship and social fairness, with the materials used designed to stay in a perpetual cycle of use and reuse.
There are five certification levels in the C2C Certified Program: basic, bronze, silver, gold and platinum. Each of the 16 styles in the Ramblers Way line are certified at the silver level.
“We’re extremely proud to receive C2C certification for our organic wool clothing as it serves as further proof that high-quality clothing can be made in harmony with nature,” says Tom Chappell, founder and CEO of Ramblers Way. “At the same time, this certification offers ongoing opportunity for Ramblers Way to continue improving and innovating, so we can create clothing that meets the lifestyle needs of conscious consumers.”
Ramblers Way collaborated with MBDC – the creators of the C2C Design Framework – to assess the clothing line against the C2C Certified Product Standard.
The independent certification guides designers and manufacturers through a highly in-depth evaluation of each product component and each stage of the supply chain in five environmental and social areas: material health, material reutilisation, renewable energy and carbon management, water stewardship and social fairness.
“Ramblers Way has set a new benchmark for clothing companies around the world,” says McDonough, co-founder of MBDC who worked with Ramblers Way alongside fellow co-founder Dr Michael Braungart. “As the first company to launch a full line of Cradle to Cradle Certified organic wool garments, Tom Chappell and his team have once again demonstrated that size has little to do with might. I think Ramblers Way is an exciting company that surprises and delights by turning its values into value for their customers and all future generations.”
The certification applies to all Ramblers Way clothing that is also certified to the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS), which is a similarly rigorous, and complementary, system. GOTS uses independent bodies to verify compliance with internationally recognised organic textile standards at each step of the supply chain, from the moment wool is purchased to when it becomes a garment at one of Ramblers Way’s production facilities.
Launched with a commitment to protecting the planet and supporting local economies, Ramblers Way was founded in 2009 when Chappell began a journey to create a next-to-skin shirt that would keep him warm, soak up sweat, and wick away moisture. Tom identified Rambouillet and Merino sheep, two breeds with superfine and long staple fibers that, when spun together using a superior spinning process known as worsted, produce Ramblers Way’s proprietary yarn.
Today, Ramblers Way wool is treated with natural enzymes to make it machine washable, and has never been subjected to the harsh chlorinated, industry standard process known as “Superwash.” As a result, Ramblers Way’s 4oz (less than 140g/sq metre) fabric boasts superior softness and is the most lightweight jersey knit wool on the market, according to the firm.
Its 100% organic wool clothing certified to the GOTS and C2C standards is also made without harsh chemicals using some of the cleanest, low impact commercial dyes available. Therefore, while a typical synthetic t-shirt may take up to 60 years to decompose in nature, a wool T-shirt can decompose in less than six months, it says.
“Our goal has always been to produce high-quality clothing that stays in your wardrobe for years to come. We are also constantly rethinking how to embrace designs that aren’t simply ‘less bad’ but also ‘more good’,” explains Nick Armentrout, supply chain director at Ramblers Way. “C2C and GOTS reinforce our commitments to sustainable agricultural, fair social practices, clean water standards, and end of life product requirements – a true circular path from the earth to the earth.”