Gore to Ditch PFCs by 2023

Gore DWR

At ISPO this week, Gore officially announced their goal of eliminating PFCs from the life cycle of its consumer fabrics products over the next several years. This is a big commitment for Gore given their PTFE membrane is produced using PFCs and they have consistently stated they will not move away from PFCs until they can give the same performance guarantee on their products. But with the recent growth in alternative solutions, it should be an easier road forward for the company.

According to the Gore Fabrics’ Goal and Roadmap for Eliminating PFCs of Environmental Concern, published on the company’s website, Gore is working towards the elimination of PFCs from its Durable Water Repellent (DWR) treatments and membrane manufacturing processes as a two-step initiative:

  • By the end of 2020, Gore Fabrics will eliminate PFCs of Environmental Concern from its consumer laminate shipments corresponding to approximately 85% of product units in the market. This includes jackets, shoes, gloves and accessories.
  • Between 2021 and 2023 Gore Fabrics will remove PFCs of Environmental Concern from the remaining consumer fabrics laminate shipments while continuing to deliver products which meet the performance specifications relevant for the end use.

To achieve these goals Gore Fabrics will undertake a substantial innovation program which will include collaborating with suppliers to develop new DWR treatments and to  eliminate PFCs of Environmental Concern that are present in the processing aides Gore Fabrics’ suppliers use to manufacture PTFE.

“Given Gore Fabrics’ influential role in the supply chain, this commitment will significantly broaden the range of outdoor products free of hazardous PFCs,” said Chiara Campione, Detox Outdoor Corporate Lead, Greenpeace Italy.

At the same event, Greenpeace Switzerland released “PFC Revolution in the Outdoor Sector”, an overview of the progress made towards eliminating hazardous PFCs in outdoor gear. Check out the document if you want a list of the brands that are currently PFC-free, such as Paramo and Fjällräven, and the progress of others, such as Columbia with their OutDry Extreme ECO jacket.

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