Étuis Mirault: from “Made in France” to “Made green”
Felts made from recycled bottles, organic cotton, acrylic screen-printing or plant-based leathers…with its sachets, cases, sheaths and holders, the artisan textile manufacturer makes using sustainable materials and ecological processes a point of honour.
A family business based in Neuilly Plaisance, Étuis Mirault uses ‘Made in France” like a hallmark. And for its General Director Nicolas Bassaget, this attachment to entirely French manufacture – proof of quality for the customer – also guarantees sustainability: “We embrace complete traceability and therefore total transparency in terms of the procedures we use and environmental and social issues,” he explains. “Our geographical proximity to our customers significantly reduces transport requirements (and therefore our carbon footprint). And at the same time, the constant quality controls we are subjected to mean we reduce our losses. And therefore our waste.”
But that’s not all. When it comes to organic and alternative materials, Nicolas Bassaget leaves no stone unturned. “Of course, we offer tailor-made sachets and cases in all types of textiles using natural fabrics (cotton-linen mix, linen, hemp) and GOTS-certified(1) organic cotton, but we feel that today we are reaching the limits of what organic materials can offer. For a product’s overall eco-coherence, we focus more on its life cycle. Furthermore, our customers are now more interested in recycled and recyclable materials than strictly organic materials.”
A solid plant base
This is illustrated by the fabrics and felts Étuis Mirault proposes that are made from recycled plastic bottles. 70% of the bottles come from France (the remaining 30% from neighbouring countries) and are processed in France too. “PET and other components are separated by optical selection. At the end of the process, non-PET elements (lids, labels, glues, etc.) represent 30% of the bottle weight; nearly 70% of the bottle material is repurposed. Compared to the production of virgin polyester yarn, this process saves 66% of the energy required, 50% of the water consumed and reduces greenhouse gas emissions by 34%.”
Another keen focus for Étuis Mirault: plant-based leathers. There’s been a lot of talk about them without an abundance of developments… “Because of their cost (far higher than animal leather), these leathers are still earmarked for super-luxury items and/or event packaging but developments are slowly taking shape. With no chromium sulphates or alum or zirconium salts, plant-based tanning uses tannins that can be found in bark, leaves, seeds, roots and the sap of plants.”
Lots of materials and processes associated (of course) with green printing methods because at Étuis Mirault, screen-printing means water-based inks.
(1) Global Organic Textile Standard