On The WTiN Podcast this week, we speak to Michael Cattanach, global product director at Polartec.
Based in Massachusetts in the US, Polartec has a rich history that dates to 1906. Back then the company was known for making military uniforms, as well as its work with wool and much more, under the name of Malden Mill Industries. But it was in the 1980s, when it developed the world’s first polar fleece, that it decided to focus its energy on the sports and outdoor markets, which the company is renowned for today.
In this episode, Cattanach talks about Polartec’s Eco Engineering initiative – a ‘whole systems approach’ to sustainable manufacturing that has so far helped to divert around 1.5 billion plastic bottles from landfill by recycling them into products such as the Mono Air Hoodie by Houdini.
Elsewhere, Cattanach speaks about balancing the need to run a successful business with accepting that environmentally friendly materials will cost more. That said, sustainability is top on the agenda for Polartec’s customers’ these days – which suggests the industry is moving in the right direction.