At Iron Roots we create sustainable athletic apparel
Making athletic apparel sustainable with the use of hemp!
Imagine wearing a t-shirt that is made completely out of cannabis. Sounds crazy right? Well not if it is up to us.
At Iron Roots, we create athletic apparel made from industrial hemp, the non-smokeable, legal version of cannabis. Products made from this plant breathe well, can't get static and are antibacterial, which means that the process of getting a bad odor from sweating gets disrupted, and thus you can practice sports more comfortable and you don't have to wash the products that much. Besides these properties, industrial hemp has a lot of environmental benefits compared to for example cotton or polyester. Industrial hemp uses about 1/4 of the land and water that cotton needs to grow, and besides that our material doesn't 't need any pesticides or insecticides to grow, which is currently a large environmental issue within this industry.
As new discoveries, like for example the microfiber pollution caused by clothing that contains polyester, come to light, it becomes more apparent that change is needed. Industrial hemp can play a major role in this transition to more sustainable materials.
One of the main reasons we don't see more change in the fashion industry as a whole is the lack of transparency. This means that customers have a hard time distinguishing good practices from bad practices, and we aim to tackle this challenge too. At Iron Roots, we aim to create a transparent supply chain, in which we measure the energy usage, water usage, CO2 emissions as well as some other metrics for each piece of clothing. With this data, we can show people what their actual impact is when they buy clothing, and not just in which country the clothing was made. In the future, this data will be secured on a blockchain, so the whole process can become trusted.
In order to guarantee these metrics, the quality of our products and fair working conditions/payment for everyone that works with our products, we have our whole supply chain located in Europe. We currently work with suppliers in Romania, which is the most developed European country when it comes to hemp fabrics.
At the end of 2017, we are going to run a crowdfund campaign, in which we're offering our first product line that will solely consist of 100% hemp T-shirts. In this campaign, we're focussing on our early adopters: athletes and people interested in sustainability. This campaign, however, serves a bigger purpose; in depth market research of untapped potential markets for growth. After the campaign, our products will be sold on our webshop, which ensures that we can offer our products for the best price to our customers. Once the economies of scale kick in, we will be able to work with distributors and stores, so we can expand our market.
The transition to sustainable materials and more transparency is inevitable and we are going to be the forerunners of it!