OUR SUSTAINABLE MATERIALS – Ahimsa Collective

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SUSTAINABILITY

OUR MATERIALS

a-him-sa:

ORIGIN: Sanskrit
from 'a' meaning non/without 
and 'himsa' meaning harm/violence

Noun: Ahimsa "Respect for all living things and avoidance of harm towards others"

Ahimsa Collective was founded somewhere in the opportunity between Environmental Values and Animal Rights. We didn't want to have to choose between the two, and nor should you.

We sought to create products that were high quality, made with innovative materials and that could eventually return to the Earth once they reached their End Of Life.

At AC, we are constantly learning, evolving, challenging and improving our manufacturing processes to operate as sustainably and ethically as possible. These innovative materials are just one example of how we plan to contribute to a more sustainable future.

Pinatex® is a natural and sustainable non-woven textile made from the fibres of pineapple leaves, essentially a bi-product of the pineapple farming industry.

The pineapple leaves are stripped into fine fibres through a process called decortication. These are converted into a 'felt' like material and are then put through an extensive patented manufacturing process.

The developers of this innovation, Anas Ananam, are proudly a certified B Corp.

View the entire process via the video link below.

VIEW THE PINATEX PROCESS

As pineapple leaves are a waste product of an existing worldwide industry, no additional land, water, fertilisers or pesticides are needed; as such, the production of the leaves has virtually no environmental impact.

In fact, the production of Piñatex has quite the positive environmental impact as 'biomass' is produced in the decortication process. This 'bio-mass' can then be converted into organic fertiliser or biogas and sold to fuel the machinery.

Therefore, both the extraction of the fibres and the production of biomass can provide additional revenue streams to pineapple farming communities.

Who knew Pineapples were so generous?

Piñatex offers a viable sustainable alternative to leather, as it is strong, durable, flexible, light and breathable, not to mention the added benefits of animal and human welfare.

Bringing it right back to our 'Ahimsa' ethos.

LEARN MORE ABOUT OUR ETHOS

In the leather industry, toxic chemicals are used in the tanning process. This has a terrible impact on both workers' health and the Earth when the products end up in Landfill. Piñatex uses no harmful chemicals in its production - a big thumbs up for animals, humans and the environment.

Ethical, social and environmental responsibility are upheld at every stage of production, and the development of this innovative material is creating a safe industry for farmers in pineapple growing countries. AC couldn’t be prouder to be supporting such a new ethical and sustainable player in the textile game.

You can read more about the Leather and P.U. industry, as we debunk some common myths here.

LEARN MORE ABOUT LEATHER VS P.U.

Certified B Corporations are a new kind of business that balance purpose and profit. Certified B Corporations are businesses that meet the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability to balance profit and purpose.

We are currently under-going the BCorp Application process and hope to be certified soon.

Our washable paper is FSC Certified (Forest Stewardship Council). The scope of this certification covers the first stage of the production chain which is the extraction of the raw material.

The main criteria and the reason we choose to work with our partner is that the FSC includes aspects such as:

  • Protection against illegal use and construction in forest areas
  • Ensuring the right to use the forest resources of indigenous peoples and local communities
  • Protecting the wellbeing and safety of forest workers
  • The protection of rare and endangered animals and their habitat
  • Limitation of the use of chemical plant protection products (especially pesticides), fertilisers and biological control
  • Strict monitoring and monitoring of the use of alien species
  • Maintenance or improvement of the condition of forests of high conservation value
  • A ban on new plantations at the expense of natural and semi-natural forests
LEARN ABOUT FOREST STEWARDSHIP

Our Washable Paper is produced in Europe. The manufacturer we choose to work with is OEKO-TEX® Standard 100 Certified, which is a symbol of the guarantee of textiles tested for harmful substances. This guarantee is published by an independent research institute OEKO-TEX® holding professional laboratories around the world, which carry out detailed studies of textiles. All OEKO-TEX® institutes are the same throughout the world and uphold the same level of high-quality expectations.

With a vision to utilise would-be waste, all AC handbags contain recycled-polyester both in the internals of the bag providing structure and in the lining itself.

AC has partnered with a reputable Australian Textile Developer to create a Neoprene like material that is strong enough to withstand daily rummages yet has a luxuriously soft handfeel.

Termed ‘Ecoprene’, this material is made up of recycled carpets, pre-consumer off-cuts and post-consumer waste, such as waterbottles. It is supported with GRS Certifications.

When we first started this brand, someone asked "but what if you run out of water bottles?"... 

We all laughed hesitantly... "Well that would be the dream". 

Sadly, every piece of plastic ever produced is still on this Earth today.

We believe it is no longer enough to be Environmentally-friendly, we have to be Environmentally-beneficial. When we founded AC, we set out to use as many existing resources as possible so as not to place more demand on the very finite resources we have left.
Despite being in our infancy, over the years we have been operating Technology and Innovation as well as our understanding of Environmental Benefits has undergone some rapid changes. 

We source Carbon Positive textiles and processes in the development our handbags and find more often than not, that by employing Recycled Materials we are not only keeping them out of landfill but increasing the durability of the product.

'AHIMSA':

Because we intend to cause no harm.
We apply this word to the treatment of the planet, people and the animals. Through out the life and production of our wares, there is to be no suffering in any capacity.

'COLLECTIVE':

Because this isn't a movement exclusive to us. It requires a major shift in human behaviour in the way we produce and the way we consume.