VANCOUVER, British Columbia - Wednesday, October 15th 2014 [ME NewsWire]
(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Canopy is pleased today to announce that innovative leader EcoPlanet Bamboo has committed to a sourcing policy designed to offer a more sustainable option for clothing brands seeking alternatives to ancient and endangered forest fibres.
This marks a shift for Canopy, whose traditional focus has been on users and producers of forest products such as pulp and paper. In contrast, EcoPlanet Bamboo is not harvesting or using trees but is the largest global developer of certified bamboo plantations on degraded lands.
Over the past year Canopy has expanded on its successful work with customers of the pulp and paper sectors. Through the Fashion Loved by Forest initiative, the not-for-profit organization is now partnering with clothing brands and designers to end the use of ancient and endangered forests in rayon and viscose textiles and assess the potential of bamboo and other fibres as low footprint alternatives. As verified by a recent Kimberly Clark Life Cycle Analysis, bamboo grown on degraded agricultural and forest lands that is managed under Forest Stewardship Council criteria can have a lower ecological impact than fibre from the Boreal forests.
“We are excited about EcoPlanet Bamboo’s interest in innovation, and the opportunities for the clean manufacturing of sustainably grown bamboo as an alternative to rayon or viscose made from ancient and endangered forests,” said Nicole Rycroft, Executive Director of Canopy.
Similar to any productive crop, bamboo can be grown sustainably or unsustainably. Canopy and EcoPlanet Bamboo’s policy agreement solidifies an understanding that bamboo should never be industrialized under the context of conversion of natural forest ecosystems to bamboo plantations.
“EcoPlanet Bamboo is committed to investing in the development of a new generation pulping facility to address current issues along the supply chain, from feedstock sourcing through to the first stages of manufacturing,” said Troy Wiseman, CEO of EcoPlanet Bamboo.
Whether derived from tree fibre or bamboo, dissolving pulp is a chemically-intensive and inefficient process. Acknowledging this reality, EcoPlanet Bamboo is committed to research and development into cutting-edge technology that will provide a more efficient and cleaner alternative to existing pulping methods.
Seventy to one hundred million trees are felled every year to produce textiles with approximately 30% originating from ancient and endangered forests. Canopy and our partners are committed to reducing the impact of the fashion and dissolving pulp industries on the world’s threatened forests. EcoPlanet Bamboo’s fibre, combined with advances in more sustainable manufacturing technology, may provide companies with one of the solutions needed to diversify the fibre basket and ensure healthy forests into the future.
Canopy is a not-for-profit environmental organization dedicated to protecting forests, species and climate. Canopy collaborates with more than 700 companies to develop innovative solutions, make their supply chains more sustainable and help protect our world’s remaining ancient and endangered forests. Canopy’s partners include H&M, Sprint, Penguin/Random House, Zara, TC Transcontinental, The Globe and Mail and Scholastic. Canopy’s work relies on the support of individual donors who share our passion for the planet.
EcoPlanet Bamboo Group is a U.S. based global company enabling a sustainable alternative for manufacturing industries that currently rely on the harvesting of natural forests for wood and fibre based products. A proven global leader in the development of commercial bamboo plantations, EcoPlanet Bamboo combines this global resource base with investment into technology that enables bamboo to be a superior fibre solution across multiple sectors, including textiles, pulp and paper, renewable energy and activated carbon.
With operations in Central America and Africa, and expansion into Southeast Asia underway, EcoPlanet Bamboo targets areas that have suffered extreme deforestation, ensuring that bamboo plantations and bamboo based products are only ever developed on degraded land, and as a deforestation free crop. In conjunction with each plantation, R&D focuses on ensuring clean manufacturing techniques, leapfrogging current technology to create a turnkey solution.
Plantations are certified under the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC), and/or suitable alternatives, and climate change benefits are quantified and commercialized through the Verified Carbon Standard (VCS).
Neva Murtha, 604-817-4974
Kristena Blume, 847-387-3609