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Sustainability

Sustainable From The Start

Sustainability at Topo Designs isn’t simply a new concept that’s inserted into The New Outdoor™, it’s an underlying pillar we’ve been cross-checking against since our beginnings, starting at the very core with building high-quality, long-lasting, durable products. Dive deeper into sustainability and our manufacturing process with us below.

Product

We begin every design cycle with clear direction on the sustainable characteristics desired in our material families. Our goal over the next 3 to 5 years is to reduce the amount of virgin materials we use every season, driving towards a line of packs and bags made completely of recycled materials. Our apparel line is currently highlighted with components like GlobalWool™ consisting of 65% recycled Italian wool, Tee shirts are built with 100% organic cotton, and our recycled fleece is supplied by innovative mills focused on reducing microfiber release. Our new outerwear will implement recycled nylons and polyesters that not only look and feel better but are both durable and ethically produced.

Process

Our long-term vision for process improvement is to reduce waste, harmful chemical use and energy consumption. The introduction of our Dirt Collection is an example boasting all three, where utilizing a garment dyeing process along with specifying GreenScreen Certified chemicals has directly resulted in a reduction of water and energy use, as well as waste creation. As applicable in the rest of our apparel line, we specify the use of low-impact dyes, water-based inks and minimal additives during washing and drying processes to further reduce our environmental and human impacts.

Our Made in Colorado products champion local assembly with shorter deliveries, resulting in lower carbon emissions. The packs and bags we make with Horween® Leather fall under the Leather Working Group’s guidelines for best practices within the leather supply chain.

People

The most integral part of bringing Topo Designs products to life are the people driving our manufacturing process from within our high-caliber factories and international teams. We choose our partners based on their ability to deliver innovative manufacturing expertise that best support our long-term quality product demands and sustainability goals. All of our local and international manufacturing partners adhere to Fair Labor guidelines and maintain certifications and best practices needed to fully support our expectations as they relate to the health and well-being of our partner workers.

Environment

We are undertaking a number of enduring and progressive steps in order to support the paramount importance of environmental protections. Our current product criteria focuses on technologies reducing energy consumption as well as identifying partners experienced in promoting renewable energy use. We are also driving towards procuring 100% of all our natural fiber fabrics from regenerative and responsible sources; reducing the need for single-use plastics by eliminating them from our packaging; increasing efficiencies within our logistics in order to reduce our carbon emissions; and participating in carbon offsets for those we can not eliminate.

Life Cycle

We believe in sustainability through durability, which is why we build our packs and bags with components like high denier nylons, heavy-duty YKK zippers and hardware, Cordura® fabrics and rich Horween® leathers. The nylon deniers we choose have high abrasion resistance, tear strength and tensile strength, that along with critical point reinforced stitching equates to a longer product lifespan. Our MAP Guarantee™ Repairs Program pushes a “repair, don’t replace” approach in which we keep more packs in use, rather than sending them to the landfill.

So, What's Next?

Our long term intentions are to reduce our negative impacts created by waste, reduce our use of non-renewable energies and reduce our demand for virgin materials, while increasing the health and well-being of our people and their surroundings, because ultimately as much as we care about the outdoors, more importantly we care about each other.

As the science behind climate change is constantly unfolding, we will adapt and alter our plan in order to support the best evidence as it presents itself. Recognizing that none of the steps listed above will singularly solve our climate crisis, we also intend on doing our part in promoting large-scale change in supply chain and consumer behaviors in order to reduce global carbon emissions.

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