Musto has unveiled the official Volvo Ocean Race merchandise collection for 2017-18 – and pledged to reduce the amount of plastic used by the business by 70% in support of the Race's renewed sustainability focus.
The release of the new range, launched in partnership with Vestas 11th Hour Racing, marks a major milestone for Musto as it continues to drive innovation around sustainability in its global business operations.
In early 2017, Vestas 11th Hour Racing co-founders Charlie Enright and Mark Towill challenged Musto to reduce the environmental impact of the plastic packaging used to deliver their products.
Musto accepted the call – despite the considerable operational challenges it posed. Plastic is a necessary evil in the manufacture and delivery of Musto goods, but despite this, the brand made a clear commitment to exploring ways to reduce the amount used, without jeopardising the quality of goods received by the customers.
In collaboration with Vestas 11th Hour Racing and the dedicated in-house Volvo Ocean Race sustainability team, Musto identified that efficiencies could be made around pre-consumer waste – that's the waste generated in a manufacturing plant through the production of carrier bags, such as punch out holes and trimmings from measuring out plastic.
This is normally sent to waste, but Musto spotted a way to use this as part of garment bags for delivery. This now means all Musto garment bags are 100% recyclable and are made from 30% recycled material.
Volvo Ocean Race has always been the ultimate test of a team in professional sport and partnering with Musto to make these changes means we are taking it up a levelMark Turner, Volvo Ocean Race CEO
And that's not the only plastic hack uncovered by the manufacturing team. They also found that by adding a single fold to the garment delivery bagds, the size could be reduced by 40% without any impact on product quality.
These two initiatives alone will reduce the weight of plastic used in the manufacture, packaging and delivery of Musto products by 70% – that's a massive saving of 11,000kg of plastic a year, the equivalent of almost six brand-new Volvo XC90s!
"We're excited to partner with the Volvo Ocean Race in producing the most innovative and sustainable collection to date and hope our range will help raise awareness of ocean health," said Petra Carran, Head of Marketing at Musto
"We're proud of the sustainability innovations we have made in the past six months and remain committed to further exploring this area in the future."
On Friday, Vestas 11th Hour Racing unveiled a 10-strong, mixed and multi-national crew which will see last edition's winning navigator Simon Fisher, two-time winner Phil Harmer, Volvo Ocean Race veterans Damian Foxall and Tony Mutter, Oracle Team USA's America's Cup racer Tom Johnson, Olympic medallist Jena Mai Hansen, second-time round-the-world racer Nick Dana and British Nacra 17 sailor Hannah Diamond join Charlie Enright and Mark Towill on the Danish-American flagged boat.