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  • Sustainably Sourced, High-Quality Materials for a Better Ride

    May 03, 2024 4 min read

    Tearing up champagne powder on VICE 113s

    Finding Sistainable Ski & Snowboard Products 

    Written by Claudia Wex

    In today’s day and age, climate change is a very high alert issue and changes need to be made in the way we live and consume, in order to preserve our world for future generations. It's no brainer that the ski and snowboard industry pollutes the environment through ski resorts, the manufacturing of products, and getting to and from the mountain to mention a few. As a ski and snowboard community, we need to start thinking about how we can incorporate more sustainability into our products and source sustainable materials.

    The Clothing Sector 

    The topic of sustainability plays a much greater role in the clothing sector rather than the hardgoods and sports equipment industry. Clothing brands who are environmentally cautious and want to incorporate sustainable manufacturing practices will often incorporate sustainable textiles into their products. 

    The Responsible Wool Standard (RWS) is a certification for wool farmers and sellers that aims to improve the welfare of sheep and the land they graze on. This eliminates issues that stem from animal welfare, land health management and social welfare. When purchasing from companies’ who have this certification, you are supporting so many different causes and fighting against climate change. It can sometimes be on the pricier end however, these materials have very high standards and are meant to last for an extremely long life - it’s worth your money in the end. 

    Sheep in need of a haircut

    Photo: Wendy Savage

    There are other certifications to look out for when figuring out whether the company you are purchasing from sources organic and fair-trade materials into their clothing. The Organic Content Standard (OCS) is a voluntary global standard that sets the criteria for certification of organic materials and chain of custody. In other words, the OCS helps strengthen companies’ claims that the products they sell contain organically grown fibers. 

    Some brands have made the switch to incorporating sustainable materials into their clothing products however, more initiative needs to be made by more organizations and help create a continued,  positive impact on our environment. 

    Hard-Goods and Sports Equipment

    Various Ski and Snowboard brands have taken steps to go green, and reduce their impact that they have on the environment. This can be seen in various ways from supporting environmental charities, reducing their footprint through production and manufacturing, or just practicing environmental mindfulness. 

    Here at Paradise, incorporating sustainable wood into our skis and boards is a must! Sustainability is one of the 7 important values that we have built into our company. For us at Paradise, sustainability is a mindset and we believe it’s crucial as a community, to minimize our effects on the environment for a greener and more sustainable future. We use sustainable woods like Paulownia and Poplar which are all from fast growing trees and growing these trees help counter climate change thanks to their higher carbon sequestration properties. The wood is soft and lightweight which makes it less energy consuming to harvest and transport, as well as very durable and has a high resistance to decay. This just goes to show that you don’t have to give up on quality when sourcing sustainable materials. 

    Flax field in bloom

    Photo: BraCom

    We also incorporate a 100% biodegradable material called Flax Fibre, which allows us to incorporate some of the properties previously attained by carbon or glass fiber. Flax Fiber is very strong and durable, it is similar to cotton chemically but is stiffer, more resistant to sunlight and faster drying. On the other hand, carbon fiber is very energy intensive to produce, it is difficult to recycle and it is not biodegradable - meaning that it cannot be broken down by natural organisms and acts as a source of pollution. The structure of the Flax also allows it to be much better at dampening compared to carbon and glass fibers. This ultimately helps reduce vibrations and improves the feel of products which allows you to have a better ride with no shortcuts on the environment. 

    Another way that you are able to incorporate sustainable materials into your products is by using a biodegradable ski wax. Most waxes are composed of petroleum derivatives that take many years to decompose and other waxes have Fluorine or Graphene which are not biodegradable. These toxic components linger in the snow and when the season is finished,  it flows right into our rivers which can impact an ecosystem of plants and animals as well as the drinking water that comes from our taps! When you place an order with Paradise, your skis and/or board will arrive at your doorstep already waxed, with a 100% biodegradable ski wax. Make sure that in the future, you continue to use an eco-friendly wax. A few brands that have caught our eyes are mountainFLOW ECO-WAXRace Wax and Dots Ski Wax.

    As you can see there are a lot of ways that ski and snowboard companies can incorporate sustainable materials into their production and this doesn’t have to impact quality. Try keep an eye out in the future and look for some of the certifications mentioned in this blog alongside some of the biodegradable alternatives that we incorporate into our skis and boards here at Paradise. 


    Questions about Paradise Sustainability Efforts? Reach out

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