“What’s in the future? A circular economy with endlessly sustainable raw materials.” Andreas Röhrich, Director of Development and Innovation at Wolford

Wolford is extremely involved in producing in an environmentally responsible way. Can you tell us about your commitments?

Andreas Röhrich

Eco-responsibility is an integral part of our DNA, so very early on we incorporated stringent criteria in terms of environmental protection. We elaborate a quality of production that permits a real sustainability. Wolford has always advocated slow-fashion and rational consumption. Our motto is: buy sparingly, choose well, and make it last. We are also part of the Cradle to Cradle certification process. This approach integrates an ecological mandate, targeting zero pollution and 100% reuse. To this end, we have reviewed our entire production cycle and, since last September, we have been offering several products that meet these criteria – tights, sweaters, etc. And we intend to expand our proposal in the coming months to present our key iconic pieces under this label to our consumers. Next June, we will launch our first products manufactured using Econyl, made from recycled fishing line. And as we’re very concerned about the climate, we also joined Klimaaktiv, an initiative of the Ministry of Agriculture, Forestry and Environment. And finally, we are very invested in a review of our on-site production. We are located on Lake Constance and have our own water treatment centre, to avoid any adverse impact on our environment.

Where are your products made?

Most of them are made in our headquarters in Bregenz. Our design and development departments and production workshops are all in one building. This enables a high degree of communication between employees but also a very fluid production process. We also have a unit in Slovenia, right near the border, to work on the finishing of our lingerie and ready-to-wear pieces.

Where do you get your raw materials?

We work with suppliers in Austria, Belgium and all over the world. All are chosen for the quality of their production as well as their eco-responsibility policies.

Are you geared towards new technologies? Which ones do you use in particular?

Additional Look AW1920

About 60 people work in the development department and we are constantly introducing new technology. Our latest project involves the production of our C2C line, the 3W skin bra, made from a single piece of fabric, ultra-light and wireless, with a support structure based on silicone tubes that have been 3D printing.

What is your recycling system?

Our Cradle to Cradle certified pieces are brought back to our stores by our customers. We then transfer them to an industrial compost station where they are transformed into biogas and humus for a new production cycle. We are about to launch a new collection where deposited products will be depolymerized, and the yarns will then be reused, with identical quality standards.

These environmental issues are clearly the future of fashion. What are the next steps for your company?

We want to produce half our collections under the Cradle to Cradle label by 2025. It’s a long journey, and we’re not there yet. We launched our first products last September and we will continue to expand, season after season. Our goal isn’t to invent an entirely new C2C line but to gradually replace the existing ones. Our feeling is that the future lies in a circular economy, leading to the endless sustainability of raw materials. And we work tirelessly towards that end! 

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