Icebreaker Banishes Plastic in its Revolutionary Sock Packaging

For Fall/Winter 2010, Icebreaker is replacing the traditional plastic banit pins used to hold pairs of its premium merino socks together with a folding cardboard wrap pack.
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Icebreaker Banishes Plastic in its Revolutionary Sock Packaging

Eco-friendly merino pioneer Icebreaker is removing all traces of plastic from its socks packaging

Wellington New Zealand -- For Fall/Winter 2010, Icebreaker is replacing the traditional plastic banit pins used to hold pairs of its premium merino socks together with a folding cardboard wrap pack.

Retail staff hate trying to repackage socks after consumers have removed the banit pin to try them on, and discarded banit pins usually end up in landfills. But Icebreaker’s cool new cardboard packaging not only dispenses with the need for banit pins but is easy for staff to repeatedly open and close.

With the removal of all plastic from the banit pin to the hanger, the socks packs are fully recyclable.

Icebreaker is also reducing the paper used in its socks packaging, and converting inner cartons used in shipping to recyclable bio bags. Shipping boxes have been replaced with biodegradable starch-based bags.

The new sock packaging is printed with vegetable-based ink on paper stock accredited by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). The packaging is printed close to the US factory when the socks are manufactured, to reduce unnecessary freight.

Redesigned sock and accessory retail fixtures have been redesigned to use 30% less material and hold twice as much stock, and are shipped flat to take up less freight space.

“All socks are not created equal,” says Jeremy Moon, Icebreaker founder and CEO. “Our socks are not only incredibly comfortable and hard-wearing, but demonstrate Icebreaker’s core commitment to sustainability.”

The new packaging and fixtures have already been given a rave reception by retailers.

In another environmental initiative, consumers are able to use Baacode, Icebreaker’s pioneering traceability programme, to trace the merino wool used in their socks right back to the New Zealand farms where it was grown.

Icebreaker is experiencing strong growth in its socks collection, which includes specialist socks for running and cycling and, for Fall/Winter 2010, new colours for alpine socks.

Icebreaker socks control moisture, are highly breathable, stay warm when wet, resist odour, and are soft and non-itchy. Icebreaker offers a money-back guarantee to any consumer not convinced its socks are the most comfortable they’ve ever worn.

ABOUT ICEBREAKER

Launched in 1994, Icebreaker was the first company in the world to develop a merino fibre layering system for the outdoors. It was also the first outdoor apparel company in the world to source merino directly from growers, a system it began in 1997. There are now 20-25 distinct pure merino fabrics in the Icebreaker system, covering underwear, mid layer, and outerwear. Icebreaker is sold in more than 2,000 stores in 24 countries throughout Europe, Asia, Australasia and North America. Based in Wellington, New Zealand, Icebreaker uses only pure merino hand-picked from 120 high country stations in the country's Southern Alps to create edgy outdoor clothing that combines nature's work with human technology and design. The company is committed to sustainability, ethical manufacturing and animal welfare. In 2008 the company launched “Icebreaker Baacode,” a pioneering supply chain transparency and traceability program. Each Icebreaker includes a unique Baacode, which enables customers to trace the garment online from rearing the sheep through to each stage of the supply chain process.

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