Retailer uses bug poop instead of chemicals as clothing dye.
Among all the usual and creative efforts to make products sustainable and green, this one might be a tad hard to digest.
Patagonia, the uber hip, outdoorsy clothing retailer, has just come out with its new Clean Color Collection that touts natural dyes sourced from 96% renewable resources that include—wait for it—dyes made from the poop of silkworms and dried beetles with a little food byproduct mixed in, according to an article on Huffington Post.
Patagonia says experimentation with dye sources is critical because the process can be so toxic. The HuffPo article explains that many of Patagonia’s synthetic dyes use less water, energy, and carbon dioxide than its competitors, but the company was looking to do more to reduce its environmental impact—hence the interest in bug poop (who knew there was such a thing). “Why the alchemy,” the company asked in its press release announcing the new line. “Because dye is dirty.”
Not content to stop there, Patagonia is also looking to do its part to mitigate food waste by incorporating byproducts of food waste into its product line. These byproducts typically fill up landfills where their decomposition emits potent and dangerous methane gases, the HuffPo article said.
I’ll take a little bug poop in my sweat shirt if it can help the environment.