Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 19

HIMALAYAN HERD
Michael Kleinwort has
been using yak wool as a
sustainable fabric for his
brand Kora since 2013.

CASE STUDY

Wooly Worries

Courtesy Kora

Climate change is threatening yak wool and other insulations.
To counter the threat, suppliers and brands are tracking inconsistencies in fiber quality as temperatures rise in historically cold areas.
by Amelia Arvesen
ON A TREK IN THE EASTERN HIMALAYAS IN 2008, MICHAEL KLEINWORT HAD A BREAKTHROUGH.
As he shivered and watched the native yaks, completely comfortable with frost on their backs
in the subfreezing temperatures, he dreamed up a base layer company that would use the animals' wool sheddings. If it could keep the massive mammals warm in bitter cold at elevations
above 16,000 feet, it should also protect humans, he thought. After more than a decade in
business, Kleinwort has grown his activewear brand, Kora, by working closely with nomadic
herders in Shanghai to collect the animals' coats when the yaks molt in the spring. Those fibers
are then spun into silky soft odor-resistant base layers, socks, hats, and leggings with superb

warmth-to-weight ratios.
Yak wool is unlike merino sheep wool,
which is abundant across the world; large
brands like Icebreaker and Smartwool are
merino's frontrunners in the outdoor industry.
Yak wool is much less common; it's collected
from some of the highest-altitude communities on the planet, including Mongolia, Tibet,
and Nepal. The colder the temperatures,
the finer the wool fibers. Yak is often used by
fashion brands as an alternative to cashmere
when that luxury fabric, which comes from
goats, is scant. Kora's official launch in 2013
introduced the outdoor crowd to yak wool as
a fiber fit for the mountains. " I figured that, if
it was possible to make a technical fabric from
this, then surely there'd be advantages, given
that yak wool was developed over millennia
to handle much harsher environments than

December 2020/ OUTDOOR RETAILER 19


https://www.koraoutdoor.com/

Outdoor Retailer - December 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Outdoor Retailer - December 2020

OUTDOOR RETAILER - DECEMBER 2020
CONTENTS
THE PULSE
HEADLINES
MARKETING
RETAIL 101
CASE STUDY
IDEAS
THOUGHT LEADERS
THE OR CHAT
RESEARCH AND RESOURCES
WELCOME TO THE PYROCENE
NATURE AS MEDICINE
FREERIDESTAN!
BREAD + BUTTER
BACKCOUNTRY BOOM
GEAR GALLERY
HOT PICKS
THE VIEW
FIELD NOTES
#SHOPLIFE
#REPLIFE
BACKSTORY
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - OUTDOOR RETAILER - DECEMBER 2020
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - Cover2
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 3
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 4
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 5
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 6
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 7
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 8
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - THE PULSE
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - HEADLINES
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 11
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 12
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 13
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 14
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 15
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 16
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - MARKETING
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - RETAIL 101
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - CASE STUDY
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 20
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 21
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - IDEAS
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - THOUGHT LEADERS
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 24
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - THE OR CHAT
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - RESEARCH AND RESOURCES
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 27
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - WELCOME TO THE PYROCENE
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 29
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 30
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 31
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 32
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 33
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - NATURE AS MEDICINE
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 35
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 36
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 37
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - FREERIDESTAN!
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 39
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 40
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 41
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 42
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - BREAD + BUTTER
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - BACKCOUNTRY BOOM
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 45
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - GEAR GALLERY
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 47
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 48
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 49
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 50
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 51
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 52
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 53
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 54
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 55
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - HOT PICKS
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 57
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - THE VIEW
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 59
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - FIELD NOTES
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 61
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 62
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 63
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 64
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 65
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 66
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 67
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 68
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - #SHOPLIFE
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - #REPLIFE
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 71
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - 72
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - Cover3
Outdoor Retailer - December 2020 - BACKSTORY
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