We previously published our 2021 sustainability report , which was the first of its kind. As a result, five themes of responsibility were also born, which we focus on especially closely in our work. We will present these themes one by one in our blog during the end of 2022 in the order according to the value chain.
Responsibility theme: Quality - organic - up close, i.e. material choices
Our first theme is related to material choices, which are the biggest source of emissions in the clothing industry. The textile industry is also one of the industrial sectors that puts the greatest burden on nature, and that's why we want to be able to work better in this matter as well. We want to use materials that are good for both nature and people. Our goal is to choose materials for our products that burden the environment as little as possible. Our fabrics are always made in Europe and the factories we use have GOTS and Ökö-Tex certificates.
The main material of our clothing production has always been organic cotton, from which cotton-elastane jersey and cotton-elastane elastic sweatshirts are made. We use organic cotton whenever possible, and in 2021 the only cotton-elastane elastic we use is made using non-organic cotton. All these materials were manufactured in 2021 in Poland at two different factories. We want to continue to keep fabric production in Poland, because in Europe, for example, the use of chemicals is regulated by EU-level legislation. For example, the REACH regulation, which entered into force in 2007, requires product manufacturers and importers to use chemicals safely and to replace the most harmful chemicals with less harmful substances.
Our clothes also do not use any prints or parts containing phthalates. Also, all the prints we use in our products (e.g. washing instructions, Kettunen and Saimaa prints) have the Oeko-Tex certificate in class 1 (also safe for baby's skin) and the Bluesign certificate.
In 2021, we used polyester in our tracksuit fabric, from which we make tracksuit jackets.
We also calculated the carbon footprint of our operations for 2021, you can read more about it here if you want . The emissions created directly from our own operations (Scope 1 and Scope 2) in 2021 were 5.74 tons of CO2equivalent emissions. This corresponds to about half of the annual carbon footprint of one Finn. In addition to this, however, we have also wanted to take into account scope 3 emissions from the value chain, i.e. our purchases, in the emissions calculation. These make up the total emissions of our operations, which in 2021 were 135.1 tons of CO2equivalent emissions. This corresponds to approx. 12 Finns' annual carbon footprint.
In our report, we also compared the effects on our carbon footprint if, for example, regular or recycled cotton had been used instead of organic cotton. It turned out that the biggest impact on reducing our carbon footprint with our current range and production volumes would be to replace virgin materials with recycled materials. In the future, we want to test more recycled materials and their suitability for our clothing production. Until now, the challenge has been to find recycled fabric suitable for our current printing methods, on which we could print our current and similar patterns. Digital printing has enabled our distinctive patterns, which are one of our most important distinguishing factors. Because of this, we cannot change the printing method easily.
We will continue to study and compare materials in 2022 and 2023. You can get to know our responsibility report in more detail here and you can familiarize yourself, for example, with the aforementioned comparison.
The epitome of the quality – organic – up close theme
We can influence the size of our emissions the most by choosing materials. All stages of our value chain are done as close to us as possible. This has been the cornerstone of our operation since the beginning.
GOTS stands for Global Organic Textile Standard is a certificate of textile ecology and ethics. The certificate takes into account the steps after the cultivation of the raw material, from the processing of organic cotton to the final product. The certificate is monitored by an external independent body.
Oeko-Tex standard 100 is an international textile testing and certification system that was developed in 1992. The standard restricts the use of certain textile chemicals that are considered harmful. The certificate issued by independent research institutes guarantees that the product does not contain harmful pesticide, heavy metal or formaldehyde residues. Certified fabrics have been tested e.g. azo dyes and nickel and numerous other harmful chemicals. The testing also includes such harmful substances that have not yet been taken into account in the legislation. Our fabrics are therefore also safe to use on babies' skin.
bluesign® standard evaluates the entire production chain from raw materials to the finished product. It limits the chemicals used and emissions into the environment. The aim of the bluesign® standard is to design production processes so that all resources are used as efficiently as possible in terms of environmental protection, health and safety. Substances harmful to humans and nature are to be eliminated from the beginning to the end of production.