Since opening in 1987, outdoor fashion brand Kathmandu has put the environment front and centre. From using sustainable materials in their products and working with governments to help put a stop to modern slavery, the brand has taken a solid approach to the great outdoors and 2022 marks no exception. This year, Kathmandu has announced its most ambitious goal, to become a net zero-waste, circular business model by 2025, kicking things off with a groundbreaking BioDown Jacket.
The BioDown project was initiated in 2018, development and testing of prototype jackets continued into 2020. What makes the BioDown Jacket so important is the fact that every element of the jacket is biodegradable, everything from the fabric to the sewing thread all the way to the complete zipper assembly.
“There is no waste in nature and we need to take inspiration from this to achieve a circular economy,” general manager of Product at Kathmandu, Robert Fry said. “The BioDown is crafted using exclusively biodegradable materials to ensure that the jacket will biodegrade once exposed to the right conditions in a landfill.”
The jacket has been crafted using nylon 66-premium material which is far more durable, hardwearing and long-lasting than traditional nylon. It also features a Durable Water Repellent (DWR) finish. During the manufacturing process, a special additive is introduced which helps accelerate biodegradation in an anaerobic environment. Once in a landfill environment, the additive becomes activated and the biodegradation process begins, taking three to five years as opposed to hundreds of years for standard synthetic products.
Like other Kathmandu products, the BioDown jacket doesn’t compromise on warmth, quality, durability or even style. Both the Men’s and Women’s styles are extremely lightweight as they are crafted with earth-friendly materials that are super light, soft and offer a unique feeling, with progressive styling and a range of different colourways available.
Taking things a step further, the body of the jacket is filled with Responsible Down Standard(RDS) 600 fill power duck down with TrackMyDown traceability. TrackMyDown traces every cluster down from the farm to shipping to production, allowing for greater transparency throughout the entire supply chain all while educating consumers to help them make informed purchasing decisions.
“The BioDown represents the forward-facing vision and purpose of Kathmandu, to improve the wellbeing of the world through the outdoors, whilst demonstrating our commitment to achieving the business’s broader, zero-waste goals,” chief executive officer at Kathmandu, Reuben Casey said.
Taking a firm ‘buy it once, buy it forever’ approach, Kathmandu’s new BioDown jacket doesn’t come cheap. The new garment will be available in retail stores and online from April 28, 2022, with premium prices to be unveiled in the coming days.