Canada Goose is embracing the growing trend of sustainability adviser, adding Bill Nye (“The Science Guy”) to its knowledge team.
The partnership was revealed Thursday, alongside the company’s second annual sustainability report, outlining Canada Goose’s progress and new commitments in complement to its sustainability platform “Humanature.”
“This is an ambitious and aggressive goal because we need to prevent the effects of global warming now,” said Gavin Thompson, Canada Goose’s vice president of corporate citizenship and the head of corporate social responsibility.
Among the aims is to reach net-zero carbon emissions by 2025 after achieving carbon neutrality across owned operations.
Canada Goose has done so through investments in offsetting projects, equivalent to 200 percent of its annual greenhouse gas emissions, even the virtual roundtable with Bill Nye (held last week) was offset — apparently the equivalent to 750 tonnes of CO2 by its attendees’ annual impact.
“The hardest thing for people to understand or really embrace or accept is that everything each and every one of us does affects everyone else on earth,” said Nye, who counts 30 years in climate change education, at a press event. “It’s a surprising thing but the reason is we all share the air. There’s nobody that’s alive that isn’t breathing — you can ask people…so along this line everything we do in the manufacturing of anything, especially in the garment industry, affects everybody in the world. If I understand it, what we’re doing at Canada Goose is providing products that are sustainably produced and they’re something that people want to buy.”
Nye went on to applaud the urgency with which the company is addressing these aims, with most of the targets set (for direct operations) by 2025.
Thompson cited Nye’s shared passion for environmental advocacy, adding: “Together with Bill, we are bringing awareness and further educating on sustainability in the fashion industry. His role as our adviser is to provide his knowledge and expertise and help us spread this message.”
While the duration of the partnership remains unclear, the company “will continue to work with trusted advisers across the globe” as it keeps moving forward, according to Thompson.
In its report, Canada Goose discussed its progress thus far and goals for preferred fibers, as denoted by global certifying body Textile Exchange, as well as chemical use under certifiers like Bluesign. While material-wide progress is not yet publicly reported for Canada Goose, certain products are given center stage.
“The Standard Expedition Parka laid the foundation for PFMs. The Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) determined the parka generates 30 percent less carbon and utilizes 65 percent less water than the in-line Expedition Parka. The LCA is a very tangible and quantifiable conversation for consumers — one we’re very proud of because it shows the greater impact. We will continue to conduct these for other styles in the coming years, directly showing the progress and influence of PFMs,” said Thompson.
Canada Goose aims for 90 percent of its fabrics to be Bluesign-certified by 2025 and is already halfway there with 45 percent of its products Bluesign approved currently. The company also touts 20 percent of its products meet the global Responsible Down Standard.
Plastics and packaging goals were also outlined, as is standard with these reports.
With its core down-filled parkas manufactured across Canada in eight owned and operated facilities in Montreal, Toronto and Winnipeg, Canada Goose had nearly 4,600 workers in Canada at its pre-pandemic height, or one-fifth of the Canadian garment-making sector’s workforce.
When asked how social impact, amid recent unionization attempts in Winnipeg, fits into its aims — Thompson pointed back to its supplier code of conduct including an updated social performance program as well as recent news of paid leave given to all employees to receive COVID-19 vaccinations.
“Outside of our Sustainable Impact Strategy, we have seen a groundswell of employee pride and engagement in our sustainability efforts and our employee-led Sustainability Councils around the world are leading our efforts on the ground,” continued Thompson. “I’m continually inspired by the drive of our team to innovate in a way that benefits both our consumers and our planet.”
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