Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute awards Stella McCartney,
Furthering the Designer’s Ongoing Commitment to Sustainability
Continuing in Stella McCartney’s dedication to sustainability and to promote a more circular economy, the brand has been awarded a Cradle to Cradle Certified Gold level certification for its wool yarn by the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute, a fashion industry first.
Through the Institute’s Cradle to Cradle product certification program, Stella McCartney is taking her commitment to sustainable design into action. The program helps the designer take her commitment a step further by creating opportunity for the brand to simultaneously optimize ingredient materials and constructively engage the supply chain. More than certification alone, the Cradle to Cradle Certified Product Standard also drives innovation and positive change for the brand and the fashion industry.
Stella McCartney has been a leading member of the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute’s Fashion Positive initiative since 2014. The initiative’s aim is to accelerate the fashion industry’s trajectory towards circular design through the collaborative development of circular ‘building block’ materials.
The brand’s achievement marks the fashion industry’s first Gold level certification for wool yarn—one of the industry’s most commonly used ‘building block’ materials. Stella McCartney selected wool yarn as its first Cradle to Cradle Certified Gold level product because of the continuity of the material use in products from year to year, across categories and collections including men’s and women’s ready-to-wear and accessories. The designer developed the wool yarn in collaboration with long time supplier Zenga Baruffa and focused on optimizing the entire process from avoiding the use of pesticides on the wool, to optimizing the chemistry of the dyes; improving the health, safety and sustainability of the materials.
To achieve Cradle to Cradle certification, Stella McCartney worked with independent assessor Ignasi Cubina, co-founder and director of Barcelona-based Eco-Intelligent Growth, to promote dramatic change over time in the material health of the wool yarn from the start. Every step of the wool production was scrutinized, beginning with the strict selection of farmers and the avoidance of toxic pesticides, and the careful monitoring of the use of detergents, leveling agents, biocides and processing chemicals. As a result, more than 70% of the yarn’s chemistry was optimized.
COMMENT FROM ANNIE GULLINGSRUD, CRADLE TO CRADLE PRODUCTS INNOVATION INSTITUTE, DIRECTOR OF TEXTILES AND APPAREL:
“Increasing the number of safe, circular building block materials within the fashion industry is crucial to realizing industry-wide change in the way apparel and accessories are designed and made. As a member of the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute’s Fashion Positive initiative, Stella McCartney is among an influential group of brands working together to lead the industry towards more responsible, sustainable and circular practices. Achieving Cradle to Cradle Certification at the Gold level for its wool yarn is a significant milestone for the entire fashion industry—and proof that a commitment to improving the safety, health and circularity of the materials we use is well within reach.”
Stella McCartney’s precedent-setting certification helps pave the way for greater collaboration and engagement in the broader effort to expand the volume and availability of Cradle to Cradle Certified building block materials for fashion.