Ecovative announces new partnership with Reformation and Wolverine Worldwide

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2022-05-18 14:33:18 – United Kingdom

Ecovative, the mycelium technology company, announced the final new member of its Fashion for Good Cooperative, sustainable fashion company Reformation, as well as a direct partnership with leading footwear company Wolverine Worldwide, to collaborate in the testing, development, and commercialization of custom mycelium materials for use in their products.

Reformation and Wolverine join a list of world-class businesses working with Ecovative on the Fashion for Good initiative, including Fashion for Good partners BESTSELLER, PANGAIA, PVH Corp., and Vivobarefoot. They will draw on Ecovative's expertise in cutting-edge mycelium materials, particularly its specialized Forager division focused on soft goods for fashion and apparel, to provide feedback that will guide testing and development to replace incumbent materials in products that have traditionally use animal leather or plastic. 

Ecovative has already created two products for the fashion and footwear sectors using pure mycelium: Forager™ Hides, a luxury leather-like material, and Forager™ Foams, breathable insulation and structural support components. All of Ecovative's products are 100% bio-based, free of plastics and hazardous chemicals, grown on agricultural wastes like woodchips and seed hulls, and fully biodegradable at the end of their life cycle. Over the course of 9 days, full-size mycelium sheets up to 24 meters long and 1.8 meters broad are generated. These mycelium materials provide feasible, sustainable, and scalable alternatives to the unsustainable status quo of the fashion and garment industry.

Kathleen Talbot, Reformation's Chief Sustainability Officer & VP of Operations, said that they're thrilled to be joining Ecovative's cooperative to help create a fully plastic-free leather substitute for scaled industry usage. Since relaunching their Ref Shoes category in 2021, they've made significant investments in the nex-gen field to develop a vegan alternative that satisfies their high quality and environmental requirements, without plastic. Helping to test and bring Ecovative's Forager Hide to market is an important step forward in this endeavor, and one that they believe will propel a comprehensive sustainability agenda for fashion. They're fired up to find a solution that can be employed not only in future Reformation collections but also made available to the whole industry.

As the gravity of the climate situation becomes clear, customers and companies alike are keen to replace leather in wearables, supportive foams in shoes and jackets, and plastic prevalent throughout the industry's goods with sustainable alternatives that do not compromise quality or longevity. Industrial animal agriculture, of which leather is a byproduct, necessitates more arable land than any other business on the planet, consumes massive quantities of water, and employs caustic chemicals. Plastics are also a worldwide concern, and the garment industry has a particularly large plastic footprint, with plastic used in practically every product for structural support and durable finishes, making many of them hard to recycle or recover. Ecovative's mycelium technologies enable the replacement of unsustainable materials with entirely biodegradable alternatives that originate in and return to nature.

Gavin McIntyre, Ecovative's Co-Founder and Chief Commercial Officer, said that there is a definite demand for additional sustainable materials, and they couldn't be more delighted to bring these to market in collaboration with Wolverine and Reformation. Both organizations offer an enormous amount of market knowledge, a varied family of goods, and experience in complicated supply chains that will be critical to maximizing the effectiveness of their mycelium materials. Together, they’re making significant progress in bettering these industries.

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