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The North Face Introduces Fall 2016 Line Featuring 100% Certified Responsible Down

The North Face achieves its goal one year earlier than anticipated
Date: 2016-01-09

The Immaculator Parka, utilizing 100% responsible down certified by the Responsible Down Standard (Photo: Business Wire)

“We’ve been working hard to integrate RDS-certified down across our entire down product line. It took a team effort, and we’re proud to say that now our customers can take comfort in knowing their down products were sourced from the highest quality, responsible down available.”

ALAMEDA, Calif.--()--OUTDOOR RETAILER TRADESHOW – The North Face today announced its Fall 2016 line, including more than 500 down product styles that feature certified responsible down through the Responsible Down Standard (RDS). Officially launched in January 2014, the RDS is the most comprehensive, global, third-party certified animal welfare and traceability standard for down and feathers available for use by any company. The North Face initially committed to include 100 percent certified responsible down in all retail and wholesale down products by Fall 2017, and was able to achieve the increase a year sooner than anticipated.

New Product Highlights

The North Face brand’s Fall 2016 line incorporates more than 500 down-insulated apparel pieces globally including The North Face Morph Jacket, an 800 fill, weather-resistant, extremely compressive piece using woven-baffle construction instead of stitched or welded baffles.

"Down provides the most compressible warmth without the weight, offering superior insulation and comfort,” said Joe Vernachio, Global VP of Product, The North Face. “We’ve been working hard to integrate RDS-certified down across our entire down product line. It took a team effort, and we’re proud to say that now our customers can take comfort in knowing their down products were sourced from the highest quality, responsible down available."

Our Commitment to Animal Welfare

The North Face has remained committed to improving animal welfare and traceability in the down and feather supply chain since 2012, when the company partnered with the nonprofit Textile Exchange and Control Union Certifications, an accredited third-party certification body, to create the Responsible Down Standard (RDS). The primary mandate of the RDS is to prevent practices such as force-feeding and live-plucking, as well as provide strict requirements on issues such as food and water quality, housing, stock density, outdoor access, animal health, hygiene and pest and predator control, among others, all supported with traceability from hatchling to final product.

The North Face gifted the RDS to Textile Exchange with the goal of scaling the standard to other brands and industries. Today, that vision is being realized as illustrated by the following milestones:

  • More than 40 brands from the outdoor, apparel and home industries have initiated certification of their supply chains to the RDS
  • An estimated 500 million birds are under RDS certification at the farm level
  • Over 1,200 sites in Europe, Asia and North America are certified by RDS to date, including 900 industrial farms.

“We’re thrilled to see complete integration of RDS-certified down into The North Face down products this fall,” said Anne Gillespie, Director of Industry Integrity for Textile Exchange. “Over the last year, many farm groups, processors, garment factories and trading units all became certified by RDS, providing a surge in the availability of responsible down to the growing number of brands who are demanding it. The North Face has been a real driver in creating the demand that has fueled the momentum we are seeing.”

The RDS aims to recognize and encourage best practices in animal welfare and to enable traceability so that products can be labelled accurately and give consumers the ability to make informed choices.



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