- Surfrider Foundation
- PFC free
- PFC free means, that the water repellant treatment is done without the use of per-flourcarbonated chemicals.
- Recycled Content
The innovative German brand is run by people, who all love action sports like skateboarding, surfing, mountain-biking and snowboarding.
Since all of these activities are depending on nature being intact, it is so important for them to save the environment from unnecessary harm. The name “bleed” stands for the “bleeding” of an exploited nature.
The primary focus is to keep the ecological damage during the production of their clothes as low as possible and guarantee a high function for active application. They reach this target by being innovative and solution oriented.
The bleed collection is composed of low impact material combinations: organic cotton, linen, TENCEL®, kapok and hemp. For highly sophisticated sportswear like functional jackets, recycled and up-cycled polyester will be applied, of course 100% pure to facilitate recycling. Leather is systematically exchanged with cork to account for being suitable for vegans.
The name says it all – bleed; because for our entire product-line no human, animal or aspect of mother nature has had to suffer. A claim, as simple as it could be. No harm, no poison, no murder. That’s the only, even if unwritten, law here at bleed, and therefore it is part of everything we do, anchored within the production of our goods through the entire supply-chain. Ecological, vegan and fairly produced, GOTS certified street- and outwear straight from the heart of Upper Franconia.
Michael Spitzbarth, Founder
12 / 15
GRV Transparency ToolBleed Organic Clothing
- Bleed is an innovative company with the key focus to act environmentally responsible in all parts of their business.
- Transparent, mainly European supply chains help to reduce impact and to make choices according to their values.
- Strong involvement in the local community inspiring social responsibility.
- Joint ventures with PETA and Surfrider Foundation Europe.
- 100% of the collection is driven by ecologically friendlier material such as organic cotton, hemp, recycled Polyester and cork.
- Manufacturing is done mainly in Europe and therefore imply low social risk.
- A big part of the investment is going into sustainable innovation.
- Manufactured in Europe with “preferred” Materials such as organic cotton, recycled Polyester and Polyamide, Tencel®, cork and production waste materials.
- PFC Free
- Highly innovative
- Brand Management
- Brand Commitment
Brand Management for us at GRV means to look at all the issues, which are directly controlled and integrated by the Brand’s Management towards business and supply chain strategy as a whole.
When determining ‘Brand Commitment’, GRV looks at the pro-active efforts of a brand toward sustainability. For example, the percentage of sustainable product lines within the entire portfolio, or the life cycle assessments and public reporting. We look for key indicators of the engagement of a brand towards responsibility.
On this level GRV is looking at product related information, like material content, supply chain and certification. Warranty, reparability and “end of use” advice are also important aspects. At the moment, GRV is looking at selected highlight products from different product lines, which show the special sustainable efforts of the brand. Here is the overview of the products we looked at, if you want to know the details, go to the specific products.
Integration of Sustainability
Bleed is a small and dedicated brand, where everyone takes CSR very seriously, in fact it is the main driver of the brand identity.
Certification, Standards and Guidelines
In general Bleed believes in the importance of certificates in order to strengthen transparency and confidence in the companies value chain. Because they place a special focus on the research and development of exotic and sustainable materials, having unconventional fibers certified is often difficult. For instance, they prefer accepting a weakness of attestation, instead of resigning a functional fiber, which does make a significant contribution to environmental relief due to its minimal water demands and with no involvement of pesticides and herbicides, whilst supporting fair wages for good work within a socially weak country.
Bleed is only buying GOTS certified fabrics, where GOTS is relevant.less
Bleed believes in very innovative, sustainability-driven design. A good example is the up-cycled outdoor collection, where Bleed uses left over material by Sympatex® and GOTS certified Lab Test samples, which would be waste otherwise to create unique pieces.less
Emission Management for Headquarters
Energy for headquarters comes from local hydro-power. The small company does the usual protocol concerning waste, paper use, printers etc.
Bleed knows all Tier One (manufacturers) partners personally and visit them regularly. Together with the manufacturers they decide on the ingredients suppliers and the materials (Tier Two).
Bleed buys all natural materials from GOTS certified suppliers.less
All European products are transported to the German headquarters by truck, all Asian product is shipped by boat to Hamburg and is then delivered by truck to Headquarters.
The CO2 emissions that are created by shipping to the end-consumer are compensated.less
Environmental & Social Projects
Bleed has been the driving force behind building a skate-park for the local community and organizes social events regularly. They have also collected skateboards for refugees to aid mobility and integration. Bleed is very active with the animal welfare organization PETA, supporting them and producing vegan “leather” features for their collections derived from cork.less
Event structures are strategically rented rather then owned, the sales meeting is twice a year, where the sales staff takes their collections with them directly – by car.
Packaging & Labeling
Packaging and labeling is reduced to the minimum and done with recycled paper or card-board. Poly-bag packaging for transportation and storage in wear-house is re-used. Items are shipped to end consumers and retailers in paper packaging.less
Material Program & Testing
Field-testing is done with staff and team riders. For external lab testing they use the competence of their manufacturers or 3rd party test providers.
Repair & End of Use
Spare parts are easy to get from Bleed. They also have an in house repair center. There is no real strategy for end of use, but they are making sure to produce mono materials for the most part or where it’s possible.less
Share of “Environmentally friendlier” products
A consequent eco design of the whole collection shows its results in organic fabrics, like eco cotton, hemp, linen, recycled polyester, Tencel®, cork and non toxic dyes. Bleed also works with bluesign® approved fabrics via their suppliers. There is no use of PFC’s for hydrophobic treatment.less
Definition and share of products, which are socially more responsible
Bleed knows its socially acceptable supply chains, which are 90% in Europe personally and the collections are 100% animal free/vegan.
Innovation is the key ingredient of bleeds success. Up-cycling with Sympatex production leftovers for their outdoor collection, exchanging leather with an innovative cork product, which was researched and financed by Bleed and successfully introduced to the market by a crowd-funding initiative, these are only a few of their ideas.
The most important milestones:
In 2012, the “I can dance my name” organic T-shirt collection was released. It was inspired by Michael’s youth in a Waldorf school, especially his ‘Eurythmy’ dance class.
In 2014 Bleed developed and sold a jacket made of cork. The jacket’s release coincided with the development of the vegan movement, with cork offering a possible alternative to leather.
Bleed’s first outdoor jacket was released in 2017, with the goal to be 100% carbon neutral.
2018 Bleed released its swimwear collection made from recycled Polyamid.
After 3-4 years of development, 2019 saw the production of Bleed’s climate neutral shoe. The most difficult project so far, the shoe consists of over 40 parts, which needed to be assembled in a production facility which focuses on ethical work conditions while still being reliable and willing to work with small quantities.
Recently Bleed released organic cotton jeans entirely made in Germany!less
Sympatex Functional Jacket
Bleed has been founded by Michael Spitzbarth in 2008 in Germany and has twelve employees. It is best known for skate, surf and urban outdoor street style.