The Material Health Certificates, which are valid for two years, offer a solution to growing industry and consumer interest in knowing more about the chemicals used in products across their supply chains and avoiding chemicals of concern, according to the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute.
“Our goal was to make a step-change toward safe, fully optimized chemistries, so we looked to certify a broad range of products used across multiple fabric types and applications,” said Jean Hegedus, sustainable business development director for the Lycra Company.
Hegedus added that the certifications underscore the company’s commitment to transparency and safety.
“For each product type, we had to disclose our ingredients to the Cradle to Cradle Products Innovation Institute, and our suppliers, in turn, had to disclose their ingredients for full transparency,” said Francis Mason, a senior research engineer at the Lycra Company, who oversaw the project. “The products with Material Health Certificates come from all six of our Lycra fiber sites, so this recognition is truly global in scope.”
By specifying the fibers with Gold level Material Health Certificates, customers can be assured about the transparency of the product’s ingredients and suppliers and the Lycra company’s commitment to continuously improving the sustainability profile of its products.
The move to expand safe, fully optimized chemistries is a key component of the company’s Planet Agenda platform for sustainability. Launched in 2008, Planet Agenda touches every aspect of the company’s business and is based on the belief that having a healthy business also means having a healthy planet.
The Material Health Certificate uses the rigorous, globally recognized material health assessment methodology of the Cradle to Cradle Certified Product Standard to provide manufacturers with a trusted way of assessing and verifying their work towards safer product chemistries.
The Institute notes on its web site that the Material Health certification process is the same as the Cradle to Cradle certification process. It notes that Material Health certification is not a substitute for full product certification under the Cradle to Cradle Certified Product Standard. Instead, it is a valuable building block in optimizing material health for products on the pathway to Cradle to Cradle certification.
Headquartered in Wilmington, Del., the Lycra Company owns the consumer and trade brands Lycra, Lycra HyFit, Lycra T400, Coolmax, Thermolite, Elaspan, Supplex and Tactel.