This is a subject that’s very close to my heart! I really hate the fact the clothes are coming in polybags! It is the best way to ensure they get to the UK from India without damage.
Damaged goods are equally bad for the environment as well as for a small (tiny) company. I simply can not afford to have any losses of product from contact marks or damage in transit.
I am committed to trying to reduce this for future deliveries and am working with the factory to look at biodegradable/alternative options. At the moment they are too expensive to consider as I am the smallest fish in the factory sea & they would be getting this product in just for me. You can help me with this by telling every supplier you buy from to look for alternatives to polybags! There are many well known brands that use our factory, so help them make the change by sharing your opinion on polybags.
I will help change this in our factory, it just might take me a little while!
Whist that is happening, if you ordered a single item from Kickstarter it has been taken out of the polybag & wrapped in our biodegradable tissue paper. If you ordered multiple items, I have kept them in the bag to ensure there is no ink transfer. The bags I have taken out I will ensure they are reused. If I can not reuse them anymore, they will be cut up and put into eco bricks – I realise this isn’t a solution, but will help reduce it somewhat.
I am also happy to receive the polybags back to pikolo HQ, if you can reuse them please do, or have a go at an eco brick yourself.
This is my little way of helping out an issue that I know is my making. It truly kills me that pikolo isn’t plastic free. I try to reduce waste as much as possible or make ethical/eco choices where I can.
All the retailer orders were shipped out in the boxes that came from India, so have been reused. The packaging for the orders is recyclable & made from recycled material, as well as the tissue paper which is bio degradable, and is owned by wahm in the next county to me.
All leaflets are printed sparingly and on FSC certified paper and printed by our local printers.
Pikolo only uses a GOTS certified factory, so you can be assured the process and people are looked after from yarn to garment and beyond.
And the last question people ask is which is a very valid one is…Why not make the garments in the UK?
This is something I researched when starting & struggled to find a factory that could source organic cotton, print it & make up in the same factory. this cost to do individual processes and environmentally just didn’t add up. To have pikolo produced in India, simply is cheaper & therefore I can keep RRP to within a place thats fair to you & fair to me and actually make it a viable business. I chose carefully a factory that didn’t just pay minimum wage, but paid a fair, living wage which far exceeds the minimum.
There is also a political aspect I hadn’t fully realised until I saw a post from Nick Pecorelli the founder of Little Green Radicals. You can read it in the Facebook thread here.
In the early to mid century Gandhi lead a movement that Indias should spin their own cloth. Up until now from the mid 1800’s cloth had been grown in India, milled & constructed in the UK, it was sold back to the Indian people. Gandhi rightfully wanted to keep the whole process in India. Once the industrial processes in India were established India could compete in the World market for textiles. Keeping raw material to finished product within the country, thus generating jobs, income & the countries economy. Often as with our factory it is a family business and will be passed down the generations.
Back to the polybags… I am trying my hardest to fix this! Please remember to tell your favourite brands why polybags are not okay! If we all work together we can change this widespread practice.