As an avid outdoorswoman, I seek out brands that produce quality gear while also actively protecting the environment they are outfitting me to go visit.
The women’s ghostwhisperer down jacket is comprised of 100% recycled nylon ripstop fabric & insulated by down sourced responsibly according to the Responsible Down Standard (RDS) which aims to ensure that down and feathers come from animals that have not been subjected to an unnecessary harm. Although nylon is not biodegradable & will therefore persist in the environment indefinitely, this persistent nature allows it to be recycled & reused which helps cease the additional production of nylon. Not all of Mountain Hardwear’s products are made from recycled materials, but they are beginning to use more & more recycled polyester & are taking steps to reduce waste in their supply chain.
Mountain Hardware products are manufactured in China and Vietnam in partnership with HERproject (HERproject works to change women’s lives through workplace programs that provide access to women’s health education). This is a great step, but it is unclear how many of their factories partake in this partnership & there is a lack of information about the remainder of their factories. Although Mountain Hardwear measure & report on both direct & indirect emissions, this data is only on North America operations which includes retail stores, but excludes most of its manufacturing. It has made a public commitment to reduce its direct and indirect carbon emissions but has not yet set a clear time bound carbon reduction target. It has made no commitment to eliminate hazardous chemicals but it complies with a Restricted Substances List.
Mountain Hardwear has a robust Supplier Code of Conduct based on the FLA Workplace Code of Conduct. It sources from countries with high or extreme risk of labor abuse but attempts to address those risks through affiliation with the FLA Workplace Code of Conduct and Uzbek Cotton Pledge. Although it mentions paying a living wage and supplies an adequate definition, it does not assure its payment. It traces suppliers in its manufacturing and material inputs parts of its supply chain, and it has publicly shared a list of suppliers, although it is unclear whether this is complete or not. It audits some of its supply chain once a year by third party or internal auditors that are accredited in social auditing and all of its audits are unannounced.