ENGEL - Eco and Social Responsibility

 

 

 ENGEL Eco and Social Standards

For over 35 years, Engel has been manufacturing underwear and clothing from natural fibres to the highest ecological standards.   Merino wool is exceptionally soft and does not itch.  Engel sources their wool exclusively from merino sheep raised in Patagonia, South America. In these subtropical grasslands, the climate is harsh and characterized by temperature extremes, dryness, and wind. The superfine and highly crimped wool protects the sheep from these elements. Around 90 million sheep live naturally on spacious pastures, some of them as certified organic livestock. 

Some countries in South America have already established laws and monitoring systems for organic farming orientating themselves towards the requirements of the target markets (Europe and USA). Among them is, for instance, Argentina. Thus, South America has the biggest amount of wool from controlled organic farming and is conform to the EC Eco Basic Regulation 834/2007.

Additionally, certifiers regularly assess once per year if the strict criteria of controlled organic animal husbandry are obeyed. This is necessary as ENGEL have their products certified with NATURTEXTIL IVN certified BEST or with GOTS. This control encompasses the entire flow of goods from the extraction of fibers to the end product. 

The wool processed by ENGEL solely comes from Estancias (farms) taking part in a programme called “Prolana”, which is backed by the Argentine government. Prolana supports its members in gaining wool by giving assistance and information in all areas of sheep breeding. This state programme follows ecological guidelines of Western industrial countries and their requirements concerning animal welfare.

The highly controversial mulesing method used in Australia and New Zealand in which the skin around the tail of lambs is removed to prevent flystrike is not necessary in Argentina due to the climate conditions and is also not practiced there.  The sheep are shorn according to strict animal welfare guidelines and the shearing process is accompanied and monitored by independent supervisors.

After transportation to Germany, the wool is treated with the innovative Naturetexx method, which eliminates the use of chlorine and toxic chemicals. This revolutionary process is powered with renewable energy and is an eco-friendly alternative to chlorine-based, chemical wool treatments. Thanks to this process, Engel Sports products are machine washable with wool detergent and, with proper care, they remain soft and do not felt. With this treatment, the natural properties of the merino fibres are fully retained.

After the wool is treated, it is dyed in Germany in a closed process using colours that are not harmful to health or the environment. The dyestuffs compound completely with the fibres resulting in colorfast garments that do not fade from washing. The merino wool is then spun with silk to fine yarns at certified production facilities. Silk is conventionally produced in China.

Engel products are manufactured and finished in Germany, either directly at Engel in Pfullingen or at certified production facilities that take the shortest possible transportation distances into consideration. This guarantees consistently high quality of production and compliance with the strict ecological and social standards required for all stages of production, all materials and inputs for each step of manufacture so that the final product can be certified.

In 2013, Engel developed a new material made from superfine organic merino fibres combined with exquisite yet robust silk that was only 17.5 microns thick.  This fabric is used for the ENGEL ECO SPORTS line.  These products were awarded the German Federal Eco Design Award in 2015.  The combination of fine merino fibres and smooth, robust silk results in maximum breathability, regulating body temperature and managing moisture.  The inclusion of 2% elastane in athletic wear, shirts and tights reinforce the natural elasticity of the wool fibres and guarantees that the garments conform to the wearer’s movements.

 * ENGEL exclusively uses wool from controlled organic animal husbandry (kbT) 

* A consequent refusal of Mulesing 

* Sheep shearing appropriate to the species and stress-free 

* ENGEL dissociates from all cruel methods of livestock breeding Engel GmbH Wäsche und Bekleidung aus Naturfasern Wörthstr. 155 72793 Pfullingen Telefon +49 (0) 7121/3 87 87-7 Fax +49 (0) 7121/3 87 87-87 info@engel-natur.de www.engel-natur.de 2/2 

ENGEL assumes social responsibility. All companies being involved in the production process are obliged to keep the social standards provided by the International Labour Organisation (ILO) whose criteria are key norms thereof. 

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Certification 

For over 30 years the ENGEL company has produced clothes from natural fibers according to the highest ecological guidelines. Besides organic cotton (kbA), we process the finest merino virgin wool from controlled organic animal husbandry (kbT) and silk. 95% of our entire ENGEL product range is certified, 49 with NATURTEXTIL IVN certified BEST and 46% with the Global Organic Textile Standard. 

NATURTEXTIL – IVN certified BEST is the standard with the highest demands on textile ecology and socially acceptable work conditions thus showing the maximum level which can be realized. The preconditions for a certification with GOTS are just a little beneath those of NATURTEXTIL – IVN certified BEST. 

                                                     

On-site controls and the certification of pre-operative companies, producers and retailers by independent, especially accredited certification authorities form the basis of this certification. This guarantees a comprehensive security for certified textiles provided by ENGEL. 

In short – the organic animal husbandry and the social responsibility is determined by the esteem and respect for animal and human being.