Q&A with Longchamp and Ocean Generation

To celebrate the 'How to Buy Forever Accessories' talk with Longchamp, Ocean Generation and the Stylist, we sat down with to ask Longchamp about their sustainability journey.

We dive deep into the details of innovations and new ways of using resources available to us and reimagining how they can be used. We discuss the process of researching, designing and producing items that help us make a positive impact on the Ocean and the environment on a daily basis. Longchamp’s Le Pliage Green is one such innovation.

 

Ocean Generation asks Longchamp:

We’re excited to hear about Longchamp’s new launch. What is Le Pliage Green?

The launch of Le Pliage Green represents a significant landmark in Longchamp’s on-going commitment to the environment. For the first time, its most iconic product is crafted from recycled nylon. Longchamp’s objective is for the entire Le Pliage line to transition to this sustainable textile by 2023. 

 

It seems like Longchamp’s signature Le Pliage bag was created with a sustainable mindset already in place. Would you agree?

Since the beginning, the ethos of Le Pliage has been one of simplicity and durability. Its pared-down design – a rectangle of canvas, a leather flap, a zip and a press-stud – represents an efficient, economical use of resources. Like all Longchamp products, Le Pliage is also made to last. And if, after years of loyal service, it becomes a little worn around the edges, it can even be repaired: Longchamp’s in-house service repairs around 30,000 Le Pliage bags a year, generally free of charge, giving each and every one a second life. Clearly, throwaway has never been the Longchamp way. 

 

What was Longchamp looking to achieve by creating a sustainable version of the well-established Le Pliage?

When it came to develop a sustainable version of Le Pliage, quality and durability were fundamental considerations.

Could a recycled textile meet the same high standards as the original nylon canvas?

As a result of substantial technological progress in recent years, the answer is at last a resounding yes! Longchamp is now able to source a recycled nylon which offers not only the same level of durability, but also the same properties (waterproof, washable, foldable), and the same look and feel as the original – and it too can be repaired.  

 

Where is the recycled nylon used to make the 2021 Le Pliage Green Bag sourced from? 

The body of Le Pliage Green is composed of 70% of recycled polyamide (nylon) canvas from a range of sources. Our suppliers collect pre consumer waste from articles such as fishing nets, carpets, nylon stockings, and offcuts from the textile production process on order to produce the recycled nylon. We also looked into the logistics of sourcing the recycled nylon. We wanted to work with suppliers who are close to our workshops, and avoid the need for it to be transported long distances in order to reach our production hubs. We now have source different recycled Polyamide from Asian suppliers to supply our Asian market and from Europe for our European market.

We’ve established Le Pliage uses recycled nylon fabric. Are there any other sustainability elements that the bag adopts?

Beyond the recycled nylon canvas, each individual component of Le Pliage Green has been carefully reconsidered by Longchamp and represents the current optimum solution in terms of quality and sustainability. As a result, it is estimated that the bag’s impact, measured in CO2 emissions, is 8-10 times less than a pair of jeans. The leather -like all the leathers used by Longchamp – is a by-product of the food industry. If it was not recovered, it would simply go to waste. The straps are made from 100% recycled fibres mainly derived from plastic bottles. The brass press-stud is also made from recycled metal. And finally, the packaging is also more sustainable as the Le Pliage Green bags are transported in recycled polythyle, with recycled paper labels and sold in fully recyclable paper bags certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) as sourced from sustainably managed forests.  

 

Does Longchamp’s commitment to sustainability go beyond the product, to your production line and wider organisation?

As a socially responsible, family-owned business, Longchamp has been working over a number of years to address its impact on the environment. 

In the company’s workshops and stores, considerable effort is made to reduce waste and energy consumption. The design of Longchamp workshops maximises the benefits of natural light, while innovative insulation, heating and air-conditioning solutions are put in place to limit energy usage. All Longchamp workshops in France are equipped with energy-efficient LED lighting, while its stores are gradually converting. In our French workshops 100% of our Le Pliage scrap fabric is recycled. 

Join us on 29 July at 7pm BST to participate in the 'How to Buy Forever Accessories' with Longchamp, Ocean Generation and The Stylist Magazine.

Tickets are absolutely free – to get yours, just follow the following steps:

1) Hit the button below to login or sign up to MyStylist
2) Head to My Events from your account and scroll down to the Longchamp event
3) Click “redeem” and enter the code LONGCHAMP

 

Join the Ocean Generation

The Ocean Generation is coming together to restore a healthy relationship between humanity and the Ocean. Because as the first generation to understand ocean issues, we are also the last generation who can stop them. We are all the Ocean Generation. Join the movement. 

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