We caught up with Finisterre at the Blue Earth Summit 4 years on from when they first started using our Hydropol garment bags to understand how their customers reacted to this innovative new material, and reflect on the sustainability challenges still faced by the fashion industry when it comes to packaging.
Back in 2019 Finisterre became the first fashion brand globally to introduce their products in garment bags made from Aquapak polymer. Their new packaging entered the supply chain with select knitwear lines before a full roll out in February, where the packaging was included with all garments in their spring 2020 collection.
The collaboration began when Finisterre – who were founded on their commitment to product, environment and people – made a commitment to eradicate single-use, non-degradable plastic in 2018. Believing that ‘single use is no use’, their search ended when they discovered that garment bags made from Aquapak’s hot water soluble Hydropol™ are inherently anti-static, are marine safe and non-toxic. As they do not break-down into harmful microplastics in the ocean or on land, they ‘leave no trace’.
Commenting, Mark Lapping, Chief Executive Officer at Aquapak Polymers said, “It was no surprise that Finisterre were the first to embrace upstream innovation for packaging in the fashion industry. The science behind our products is a real solution to the world’s plastic crisis and we look forward to seeing the positive reaction from their customers – knowing they aren’t adding to the problem, but helping to solve it.”
Aquapak’s Technical Director, Dr John Williams added, “The amount of pollution from traditional plastic packaging has, understandably, been a source of concern across the world. Many years of research and development have enabled Aquapak to develop an alternative to traditional, hydrophobic plastic packaging that gives all the functionality of widely-used plastic whilst addressing the concerns they bring.”
Whilst we understand that packaging would not be necessary in an ideal world, we acknowledge it’s essential to keep products protected on their journey. As the last piece of non-degradable plastic in their packaging, Finisterre turned to us to find a better solution. The Finisterre bag is made from the hot water soluble version of Aquapak’s Hydropol™ material which means it is perfectly suited for its use, yet still allows it to be recycled or be dissolved and disposed of safely and benignly in waste water systems.
“To see the completion of this project was one of the most exciting moments in my career, and to be able to launch something so ground-breaking and literally world changing was a proud moment.
The reaction from our customers has been a joy, they are very knowledgeable and invested in the values we stand for as a brand and to receive their positive feedback has been engaging. They should, and do, hold us to account on all matters and help us question and push innovation.
We have received many enquiries from other brands to also engage with Aquapak and have mentored several through the onboarding process. Change can be scary, so it helps to have a reference point and to see what can be achieved, and if we can help other brands meet their company goals for change, all the better.
Finisterre first became B-Corp certified in January 2018, and recertified again in 2021, so we are continually looking at product innovations that will support our social and environmental responsibilities. To be partnered with Aquapak, leading the way for future generations is unbelievably inspiring,” says Niamh O’Laoighre, Head of Product Development & Technical at Finisterre.
Contact us with the form below if you’d like to discuss how you can switch Hydropol™ garment bags.