AUCKLAND: Cavalier Corporation Limited announced that its Bremworth carpet business has secured a $1.9 million grant from the Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), as part of MPI’s Sustainable Food and Fibre Futures (SFFF) investment programme.
The grant will be used by Bremworth to help co-fund its $4.9 million research programme to build capability and support the development of a science-based and environmentally sustainable approach to creating desirable, safe and high performing natural interior products.
In particular, the three-year programme will involve research and development of natural and green chemistry-based alternatives to the few remaining synthetic components of woollen carpets.
CEO, Paul Alston, commented: “People don’t realise how much plastic is going into their homes … or that synthetic carpet is made from plastic. Like many things, used carpet often ends up in landfill and a synthetic carpet put into landfill today will still be there many, many years later. With the support of the SFFF funding grant, Bremworth is seeking to create better and greener ways to manufacture wool carpet and an end product that is healthier for the planet.
“Over the next ten years, our vision is to become a global leader in designing and creating desirable, sustainable, safe and high performing interior products. Our 50+ years of experience and exploration has taught us that, for design, innovation and performance on the floor, New Zealand wool is the best fibre available. And the good news is, New Zealand wool is also 100% biodegradable, renewable and sustainable. That is why we have embarked on our journey to becoming a wool-only carpet and rug company and we’re delighted the Ministry for Primary Industries is helping us to achieve our goals.”
In announcing the funding, Agriculture Minister Damien O’Connor, said: “More than ever consumers are considering the entire life-cycle of products. We believe this programme will spur demand for New Zealand strong wool and enhance our manufacturing competitiveness through strong environmental credentials that challenge industry norms.
It aims to keep New Zealand woollen yarn and carpet manufacturing capacity in New Zealand, preserving jobs, and protecting local communities and supply chains.
“This new project is a great example of an initiative that aims to create a step change in the wool products manufactured in Aotearoa and deliver on the Fit for a Better World vision.
“Ultimately we hope it will benefit New Zealand’s strong wool sector, with better returns for our farmers and manufacturers, and supporting their communities.”
Bremworth’s strategy aligns with the work undertaken by the Government-initiated Strong Wool Action Group in promoting New Zealand and is in line with the Government’s strategic priorities of:
(1) growing the sustainability, value, and reach of New Zealand’s exports;
(2) unlocking the potential for sustainable growth in the regions
(3) transitioning to a clean, green, and carbon-neutral New Zealand; and
(4) investing for social wellbeing.
Paul Alston commented: “We’re making a stand in favour of high quality wool and natural fibres for interior solutions. We believe that nothing feels better than living with beautiful, natural materials, rich with integrity, quality and design. We’re looking to integrate our expertise, technology and science across our business to deliver responsible solutions, providing customers with environmentally responsible options in the interiors market.”