Mulberry launches first fully sustainable bag

by Larry Read

British heritage brand Mulberry has unveiled its first 100 percent sustainable leather bag, as part of its ongoing sustainability efforts.

The Portobello Tote has been designed to be a more streamlined, luxurious and sustainable option to the plastic shopping bag, and has been made entirely in the UK, at Mulberry’s carbon-neutral factories in Somerset, using heavy grain leather from a gold-rated tannery and the material is a by-product of food production, explained the luxury label.

While 50 percent of its collections are made in Somerset, this marks the brand’s first fully sustainable bag, as the leather has gold standard rating, awarded by the internationally recognised Leather Working Group based on the environmental operations and output of the tannery, and the unlined design has been stitched with Epic EcoVerde thread, a recycled polyester fibre.

The creation of the Portobello bag is inspired by Mulberry Green, the brand’s responsibility commitments that focus on creating a positive change and a sustainable legacy through the care and attention it takes in designing, sourcing and manufacturing each collection.

Commenting on the design, Mulberry’s creative director, Johnny Coca said in a statement: “Our starting point for this family was the ultimate everyday item, the plastic bag – functional, but throwaway. The Portobello keeps the beautiful utility of this silhouette and elevates it into an elegant tote that is practical and, more importantly, made to last.”

Mulberry unveils its sustainable Portobello Tote bag

The tote also features double loop handles and a shoulder strap, so it can be carried or worn across the body, and is available in a range of signature and seasonal shades, explained Mulberry including black, midnight, chestnut, Nordic blue, crimson, tangerine orange and Mulberry green.

Thierry Andretta, Mulberry chief executive, added: “I am delighted to oversee the creation of Mulberry’s first completely sustainable bag. Through our Mulberry Green responsibility commitments, we are continuing our innovative approach towards design and manufacturing in a conscientious way, ensuring we will provide truly luxury, truly responsible products for our customers.”

As part of its commitment to ensure the price for responsible sourcing and production is not passed on to the consumer, Mulberry has also added that 100 percent of net proceeds from the sale of the bag will go to the World Land Trust, a conservation charity that funds the creation of reserves and provides permanent protection for habitats and wildlife.

To further highlight its sustainable credentials, Mulberry is also placing a spotlight on its lifetime restorations services, which it states is part of its dedication to “product durability and longevity” where it offers repair service including replacing screws, components and straps to allow customers to “revive, rather than replace, a well-loved bag”.

The Portobello Tote is available in-store and at mulberry.com, with prices starting at 795 pounds.

This is Mulberry’s latest sustainable product, in November it launched its new men’s collection in responsibly sourced Econyl regenerated nylon, a durable, sustainable material crafted from ghost fishing nets retrieved from the ocean and other salvaged waste. The Como Check capsule collection featured five key silhouettes including the brand’s heritage backpack and city tote, in a new print with traditional tartan overlaid with camouflage.

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