Sustainable Supply Chain
When we started BamBooBay back in 2012 sourcing sustainable organic fabric with ethical printers was a real struggle. Now in this new decade of the 20’s we have a plethora of choices and we have carefully curated the options to best elevate the product always with the environment in mind.
We offer a range of sustainable fabrics to choose from, dedicated to our different stories. The salvage fabrics are generally limited in colour choice and we use for Artist prints, organic cotton offers widest range of colour whilst our heritage fabric Bamboo has the best handle and next to skin feel.
Below is an in-depth explanation of the different fabrics we use and why, the ethical printers we have partnered with to give a full end to end sustainable methodology in sourcing to production to delivery. Enjoy the read.
BamBooBay Nature Made 🌿
Like organic foods 20 years ago, the idea of organic cotton is confusing too many of us. It’s taken a little longer to catch on because the correlation isn’t as direct. We don’t eat cotton fibre (at least we hope you don’t!) However, more people are becoming knowledgeable as to how the organic cotton movement is just as powerful and important as that of organic foods.
In addition to being one of the most widely grown crops in the world, growing conventional cotton is also one of the most chemical-intensive. These chemicals have tremendous impact on the earth’s air, water, soil, and the health of people in cotton-growing areas. They are among the most toxic chemicals as classified by the Environmental Protection Agency.
The problem is even worse in developing countries with uninformed consumers, and lack of stable institutions and property rights. In addition to destroying the land, thousands of farmers die from exposure to these chemicals every year.
Organic cotton is grown using methods and materials that have a low impact on the environment. Organic production systems replenish and maintain soil fertility, reduce the use of toxic and persistent pesticides and fertilisers, and build biologically diverse agriculture.
Third-party certification organisations verify that organic producers use only methods and materials allowed in organic production. Organic cotton is grown without the use of toxic and persistent pesticides and synthetic fertilisers. In addition, federal regulations prohibit the use of genetically engineered seed for organic farming.
Why is organic cotton better for the planet?
Healthier soil - organic farmers use natural methods like composting to create healthy soil. Healthy soil acts like a sponge, soaking up water during floods and holding it for longer during droughts.
No polluting pesticides - hazardous synthetic pesticides need to be diluted to bring them to 'safe' levels when they enter waterways - over one fifth of water used to grow non-organic cotton is used for this purpose. This is not the case for organic cotton because hazardous synthetic pesticides are banned in organic farming.
The way cotton is watered - most organic cotton is grown in rain-fed areas, this mean farmers rely on rain to water their cotton, instead of having to extract water from the ground which can put pressure on water supplies in local communities.
Read more about why organic cotton is better for the planet here.
The salvage product we offer uses the following process:
- They salvage the cuttings from organic cotton textile production, shred them and turn back into soft cotton fibres.
Then they add fibres made from locally recycled plastic bottles to obtain the cotton and polyester blend.
The blended fibres are spun into fine yarn to make fabrics.
Finally they finish the production with care to create a high-quality product.
All products using this fabric and technique are clearly identified on the website and come delivered with identification and cert of Salvage material.
We have been producing BamBooBay clothing from bamboo fabric since 2012 offering unique feel and next to skin breathability. Look out for highlighted styles that feature Bamboo for extra comfort and great fit.
Bamboo can be a very sustainable crop; a fast-growing grass, it requires no fertiliser and self-regenerates from its own roots, so it doesn't need to be replanted.
Bamboo plants are capable of growing up to four feet a day. Moreover, bamboo plant releases 35% more oxygen in the air compared to other trees of the same size.
With its fast growth, bamboo matures within seven years. It does not need to be replanted as it has a vast root network that continuously sprouts new shoots. It helps to improve soil condition and prevent soil erosion.
In mechanical process the plant is crushed and natural enzymes are used to break the bamboo walls to get natural fibres. These fibres are mechanically scoured out and spun into yarn.
We only use certified suppliers and manufacturing but some chemicals are needed in the process to convert fibres which still means Bamboo is better than most traditional methods and fabrics but cannot claim to be chemical free or the greenest.
Shirtworks our printers based in Oxford, UK are great guys, they're accredited members of the following associations. Find out more about why they proudly supplying Ethical, Fair Trade, and Organic Cotton T Shirts.