Updated: Nov 23, 2019
As a new business, I can honestly say things change. Most of the time, they change very quickly.
What doesn't change as fast is my reaction. For the past 2 years, Outdoor New England has primarily sold whitewater kayaking goods, almost exclusively. Whitewater is our passion, it is where we are at home, it's our cornerstone and what defines us as a speciality retailer.
A long time ago, we made the realization that plastic hulls are not enough.
What we struggled with, is the diversification of brands, while still being true to ONE's core and connecting people with the outdoors.
The more we researched, the more Patagonia stood out.
Lifetime Warranty... No seriously!
Did you know that Patagonia has a Lifetime Warranty? I didn't, and most likely if you told me I wouldn't have believed you anyway. As a lover and user of outdoor spaces, I struggle with the "throw away or replace" consumerism mindset that is prevalent in society. However, I also work at a retail store. A slight conundrum, but still if all we are is a retail location then we aren't doing enough. Connecting people with the outdoors to grow the next generation of environmental stewards is our goal. As such, how about working with a company who instituted an Ironclad Warranty on their products, whether its socks, a hat or a coat. It doesn't matter Patagonia stands up for what they make!
No one does more than Patagonia! 1% of profits goes towards environmental activism and stewardship. They are measuring their impact on the planet. Speaking up for natural resources. Growing their technologies to make products that do less harm year after year. All of these things are ingrained in their mission statement, "Build the best product, cause no unnecessary harm, use business to inspire and implement solutions to the environmental crisis.." I mean come on...
If that's not enough, Patagonia's CEO just gave his $10M tax break back towards climate change solutions.
Seriously, inspiring stuff in a time of need!
Have you ever heard of a Fair Trade Certification. I never had, but Patagonia has, and they defined the term.
This is how it works: Patagonia pays a premium for every item that carries the Fair Trade Certified label. That extra money goes directly to the workers at the factory, and they decide how to spend it. This is not a top-down program. In each factory, a democratically elected Fair Trade worker committee decides how the funds will be used. Workers have chosen to use the premiums to fund community projects, like health care programs or a child care center; to purchase products they could otherwise not afford, like a TV or a stove; or to take a cash bonus.
In Thailand, the money was spent to cover school fees for 265 children, thereby investing in their children’s futures by ensuring their access to an education.
Sri Lanka used their premiums to open a free day-care center and implement a health and hygiene program.
A totally new standard! Read more... https://www.patagonia.com/fair-trade-certified.html
Welcome to the next step for our small business.
Get outside, New England!