What the Heck is Traceable Down?
A good number of outdoor brands care an awful lot about the environment. After all, if you want people to go outdoors, you should want to take care of the outdoors, too. I was having a discussion with a customer in our Evanston, IL store one day when I mentioned the term “traceable down” while talking about a Patagonia jacket. I was a new employee at the time, and I thought I was pretty hot stuff for knowing about this term at all. A blank look. “What’s that?” the customer asked. You could have knocked me over with a feather (pun intended). “Ummm, well, that means that Patagonia knows where the down comes from.” “So what?” I had to admit that I didn’t know much about it, but I resolved to get an answer. It turns out that I was partially right – having traceable down means that Patagonia knows where the down used in their products is sourced. But that is only a small part of the big picture.