Habitude uses only organic cotton. And that is because conventionally-grown cotton requires an enormous amount of pesticides, and pesticides are nasty things. Many of them are proven to cause cancer in humans, so just imagine what they can do to the environment, not to mention all the farm and factory workers who are exposed: ground and surface water become polluted and ecosystems are poisoned. Over time, pesticides lose their effectiveness because the targeted organisms develop immunity, so even more powerful poisons are required to do the same job.
It takes about 1/3 lb. of chemicals to grow enough cotton to make one t-shirt. But on top of that, even more harsh chemicals are required for the processing and finishing of the cotton fiber. Just think of all those chemicals being released into the environment for one little t-shirt. What’s worse is that those chemicals don’t stay put once they're released into the environment. Not only do they seep into groundwater, but they also have a nasty habit of evaporating into the air and traveling across the planet, polluting wherever they go.
Organically grown cotton never uses synthetic fertilizers, pesticides, herbicides, fungicides or defoliants. Instead, organic cotton growers use natural methods like crop rotation, natural fertilizers, and beneficial insects to ensure a healthy crop. Just think, if our ancestors managed to grow cotton naturally for hundreds of years, then surely, in the 21st century, we can, too.
Hemp is one of the hardiest and strongest fibers there is. It grows so well all by itself (imagine that!) that the need for pesticides is nonexistent. It is also processed and finished without the use of harsh chemicals, so the end product is completely sustainable.
Organic wool comes from sheep that are raised according to the federal requirements for organic livestock. Organically-raised animals are not given any synthetic hormones or unnecessary antibiotics. They also must have access to outdoor pasture.
Conventional wool comes from sheep that don't get these protections. Moreover, they're subjected to dipping, where the animal is completely submerged in a tank containing harsh parasiticides. Chemicals from these baths can end up contaminating soil and groundwater. Conventionally raised sheep are often crowded together in pastures, so that the land becomes overgrazed and depleted. Finally, there's the practice of mulesing, where the folded flesh of the sheep's hindquarters is removed without anesthesia, to prevent a condition called flystrike. Flystrike is serious, but there are humane options available to prevent it.
At Habitude, we proudly use only organic wool.