Just Say No to Cashmere?

Just Say No to Cashmere?

According to the Colbert Report interview with Evan Osnos I watched last night, I need to add cashmere to my list of forbidden eco-destroying items.

Apparently, US demand for affordable cashmere sweaters has lead to a big increase in the number of goats in Northern China and those goats are turning the landscape into a massive dust bowl. The dust merges with pollution in China and floats over the Pacific, landing in San Francisco and Los Angeles where it gets in my pores and makes me need more facials.

Fantastic. No more J. Crew cashmere for me. Although I love the soft cashmere they sell, it does tend to pill a lot faster than the cotton alternatives. I’ll need to find a good source for bamboo and organic cotton sweaters. It’s hard work trying to do the green thing!

Next Post:
Previous Post:
This article was written by
There are 12 comments for this article
  1. Beulah Sorensen at 6:10 pm

    Look at alpaca wool. Hypo-allergenic and I haven’t heard that it destroys the environment. Besides, they’re just so cute!

  2. AlisonM at 6:39 pm

    Nooo! I adore cashmere. How sad. Any chance the good quality cashmere better for the world than the cheap stuff? But of course all the dry cleaning isn’t, so it’s pretty much doomed.

    I am loving bamboo shirts though. I stocked up at a sample sale not too long ago and they have taken over my wardrobe.

  3. Chelsea at 7:25 pm

    I went to some Alpaca farms a few weekends ago in Hood River, OR. They were nice little farms and the scarves and sweaters were soo soft. Just like cashmere.

  4. Beulah Sorensen at 7:34 pm

    Try the Alpaca Direct and Peruvian Connection websites for sweaters. Alpaca Boutique has beautiful winter coats. Happy shopping!

  5. jordan at 8:55 pm

    I’ve got to admit, it is getting annoying all the things we have to worry about now to stay green. Every week its something new. I think I hit my limit when Apartment Therapy did a story on how many trees are cut down to make books. They want us to boycott books now?

  6. mrsem Author at 12:09 am

    I know! Is it possible to do anything that isn’t bad for the environment?

  7. Calie Anderson, C.I.D. at 12:40 am

    I know this is a serious issue for some, but you have to see the humor in it. First you got the goats (which are a funny topic all on their own), then you have the cashmere traveling across the sea (on fluffy clouds of course), and then you have city dwellers getting extra facials. Ugh, this post has made my day. Thanks Emily 🙂

  8. Julie at 2:35 pm

    Thanks for the info. I did not know that! I like to knit with cashmere blend yarns. Hum. I guess I better think twice.

  9. e at 3:07 am

    don’t dry clean your cashmere! hand wash it in cold water with a gentle detergent. a great alternative to buying cheap cashmere (j crew’s cashmere isn’t great for the price point) is to buy vintage sweaters. buying good quality (expensive) cashmere would have been fine 10 years ago, but now that it is being produced in such large (and cheaper) quantities, it’s too difficult to avoid the problem. it’s not just the Chinese dust bowl, there are also all those factories polluting in the name of affordable luxury.

  10. mo at 5:37 am

    Just to add another worry, I would say be careful of bamboo as well. There’s bamboo flooring, bamboo kitchen products, bamboo sheets, etc. and what it all means is that rainforest is getting cut down to make room for bamboo farms. It does grow fast, but not fast enough for the demand that the U.S. has created. It’s not easy being green after all…..

  11. South Florida Alpacas & friends at 2:25 am

    Alpaca, alpaca, alpaca,…22 natural colors without killing the animals, shearing each year. Alpacas are like raising teddy bears, eat grass, and what they pass is excellent fertilizer. The fleece can be blended with silk or other, but long and soft with no “scratchiness”…so “Say No to Cashmere” and do say “Yes, yes, yes to alpaca.” sez Stephen Colbert the alpaca from The Farm of Eden in Central Florida.