Allbirds and Icebreaker back regenerative wool platform | Apparel Industry News | just-style –

Commitments from 167 farms represents more than 2m acres of regenerative farming

The ZQRX index, which is based on NZM's ethical wool platform, ZQ, aims to help tackle the environmental impact of the global fashion industry, which is responsible for 10% of annual greenhouse gas emissions worldwide.

The frameworkaddressesclimate change and greenhouse gas emissions and makes the case for regenerative farming practices which representa considerable opportunity to sequester (store) carbon, and slow climate change. Theindex also includes the foundational tenants of ZQ such as animal welfare and social responsibility, as well as an increased focus on environmental issues that directly reduce carbon emission and improve biodiversity, like waste, water quality and soil health.

The ZQRXindex is currently being applied to 167 farms in New Zealand, representing over 2m acres of land and resulting in carbon being retained and stored in soil, and in vegetation, with many additional animal welfare and social responsibility benefits also being seen.

The three brands, which combined represent about 2mkgs of wool,have committed to sourcing their New Zealand Merino through the ZQRXplatform.

"Through our industry-leading carbon footprint work with our leading brand partners, andwith support from the Ministry forPrimary Industries, we know on-farm emissions represent approximately 60% of the emissions associated with woollen products and are our biggest opportunity to lower our impacts," says John Brakenridge, New Zealand Merino CEO. "Through the adoption of regenerative practices that both store more carbon and emit less, we could reduce our on-farm emissions down to zero.

"The ZQRXindex addresses the health of the eco-system and farming communities, rewarding the value of growers who are committed to regenerative agricultural practises. ZQRXis the start of a global movement toward brands, businesses and growers working together to address critical global issues such as climate change and biodiversity loss. We dream of a day when all wool is farmed with regenerative practices."

IcebreakerandSmartwoolhelped found the original ZQ platform 13 years ago, whileAllbirds, which also sources ZQ ethical wool, will be the first fashion brand to label every item produced with its carbon footprint.

"As we've seen through 2020, swift sea-change can only be achieved through collective action; together, competitors have enough influence to right the ship when it comes to the universal threat of climate change. With ZQRX, we are backing a movement towards a truly regenerative future, one that prioritises the planet and supports our unwavering pursuit to make better things in a better way," says Allbirds' co-founder Tim Brown.

Greg Smith, Icebreaker brand president, adds:"We've always believed nature has the answers and our decisions need to have respect for the greater ecosystem. We are constantly impressed by the way farmers care for their land, care for their animals and care for their people. They are all interlinked. Our growers have already made strides, over generations, to farm regeneratively. ZQRXboth honours these steps and provides us a platform to measure, track improvements and push beyond.

"While there is no one solution to the climate challenges we face, the ZQRXplatform empowers farmers to work with nature to improve continuously. It is one step we, collectively, as the world's leading Merino wool brands, can take to change the world and leave the planet better off than we found it."

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Allbirds and Icebreaker back regenerative wool platform | Apparel Industry News | just-style -

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