Allbirds is well known for its commitment to sustainability, and now, the New Zealand-American company is putting its money where its mouth is. This week, Allbirds has announced the first investment of its kind for the brand, awarding $2 million to material innovation firm, Natural Fiber Welding Inc., in hopes of bringing a more sustainable leather alternative to the fashion industry.
“For too long, fashion companies have relied on dirty synthetics and unsustainable leather, prioritizing speed and cost over the environment,” said Allbirds co-founder and co-CEO Joey Zwillinger.
Following the $2 million investment, Allbirds is poised to introduce Plant Leather, the world’s first 100 percent natural plant-based leather alternative. Leather has long since been one of the most common materials used in fashion, and by utilizing Plant Leather, the subsequent carbon impact will be more than 40 times less than the impact of leather and 17 times less than synthetic leather that is made from plastic. In comparison to the latter, Allbirds’ Plant Leather is made with vegetable oil, natural rubber, and other bio-ingredients, making it an ideal leather alternative.
“Natural Fiber Welding is creating scalable, sustainable antidotes to leather, and doing so with the potential for a game-changing 98 percent reduction in carbon emissions,” Zwillinger added. “Our partnership with NFW and planned introduction of Plant Leather based on their technology is an exciting step on our journey to eradicate petroleum from the fashion industry.”
With the investment in Natural Fiber Welding, and the introduction of Plant Leather, Allbirds is hoping to lead the fashion industry in a new direction with a more sustainable future, one that will accelerate the demand for green technology.
You can learn more about Natural Fiber Welding and its technologies based on the sustainable use of plants and natural fibers by following here.