Wool is neither the most animal-friendly nor the most eco-friendly material. Sheep have quite heavy environmental footprints and require large areas of land. Sheep are also, unfortunately, not always treated well. Many therefore prefer to opt for animal-friendly alternatives. But what are your options? We’ve listed our favourites for you.
Weganool is a plant-based alternative to wool. This textile is 70% organic cotton.
This cotton is grown without the use of harmful chemicals using only rainwater. As a result, no extra water has to be extracted from the soil limiting its environmental impact.
The last 30% of Weganool is Calotropis fibres. Calotropis is a plant that is perfectly happy to grow on degraded soils. It’s ideal in the face of the soil degradation that is more and more common today. The Calotropis plant requires little water and no pesticides and is found in large quantities in India.
Weganool is particularly sustainable. No waste is generated in the production of this vegan wool. Indeed, they produce a biological insect repellent from the waste. The waste from the plant thus serves as raw material for an eco-friendly pesticide.
Weganool is now commercially available in Europe. Fun fact: this fabric was first used in Belgium by clothing brand Infantium Victoria who produce high-quality baby and children's clothing! Worth checking out! You now know that by buying a vegan garment, you are not only helping the environment but also women to an honest job.More info about Infantium Victoria
A team of Colombian university students succeeded in creating an alternative to wool from coconut and hemp. The revolutionary Woocoa was designed in 2018 and immediately won the PETA award for best animal-free wool. To produce it, coconut and hemp fibres are first treated with natural proteins (enzymes). These enzymes come from oyster mushrooms. No harmful chemicals are involved in the making of Woocao!
In Colombia, coconut fibres are agricultural by-products, but waste products that can create jobs for communities on the Caribbean coast. Producing Woocao therefore not only upcycles waste but also creates honest jobs. A win win, for the environment and the economy. Local people in Colombia today are still burdened by internal conflict between rebel groups. An alternative income is crucial for local people. Coconut and hemp production can provide an answer to this.
Coconut products are good wool substitutes. Nullarbor is another type of vegan wool made from coconut by-products.
This is a small selection of the vegan alternatives available on the market. Several brands today work exclusively with vegan materials, to end animal suffering.
Looking for sustainable and vegan clothing? Take a quick look at our shopping guide!