Organically Raised Sheep
Our Organic Merino Wool is grown by over 100 family farmers in the Chubut region of southern Argentina. Farms are each several thousand acres, as much of the land is arid, with an average of 1 sheep grazing for every 3 acres. These sheep are raised to the same standard as sheep raised for organic dairy and meat, and are regulated by the US Organic Rule. Taking the time and effort to understand the overall financial status of our farmers is what we call real fair trade.
Processing wool into finished socks is a long detailed process, and we are involved in each step. We source our Organic Merino Wool through a special top-maker (sheared wool that has been washed and combed) because our work with them helped to perfect the first certified eco-friendly washable wool (anti-felt) for our socks. The process is now certified by GOTS (Global Organic Textile Standard), and our months of trial have paid off: Batch after batch of high quality, thick and soft Maggie’s hikers and new Maggie’s baby wool socks wash and dry great. Just wash your wool socks inside out, and we guarantee they will stay soft and stretchy for years. Working with suppliers to constantly improve quality without raising prices is what we call real fair trade.
The spinning of the Organic Wool for our Killingtons is a true tale of American ingenuity. Once our organic wool tops are prepared, we deliver them to the oldest continuous wool spinning plant in North America, in business for over 200 years, and here is where the magic happens. Located a few hours outside of Boston, this plant is teeming with tales of skilled craftsmanship and heritage. Our modern consultants tell us the quality at this generations-old plant remains unsurpassed anywhere. Run by three brothers, we are honored to have our wool pass through their hands. Revitalizing the heritage of appropriate technology, and respecting the hands that create functional goods for our world is what we call real fair trade.
Our Organic Merino Wool socks are knit in both North Carolina and Alabama by two different family run knitters. Renee and Britt make our Killingtons, and constantly impress us with their quality and innovation. Having rebuilt their facility from the ground up after a devastating fire, theirs is one of only two mills left in a county that used to house 75. We cannot say enough about our newest knitter located in NE Alabama, who skillfully create's our Organic Urban Wools and new Organic Baby Wool Socks. Run by a home-town native who came back after seeing the world, we have learnt much from this team about seamless toe closures, the proper width for each size feet, and how extra wash time can reduce the stress on the sheep’s wool. This group has also taught us how Mexican immigrant and native Alabama workers can work side-by-side to produce some of the best quality socks that have ever carried a Maggie’s label. Constantly listening and learning from our suppliers as well as our customers is what we call real fair trade.
Dyeing & Finishing
Our Wool yarn is dyed in North Carolina at a family owned-and-operated mill in business since 1943. Our dyes are all GOTS-compliant, and as our volume grows we hope to get them GOTS certified. Maggie’s produces 65% of our products in the USA, and all of our products in the Americas, reducing our carbon footprint dramatically. Seeking out producers as close to home as possible, and working with them to develop lower impact processes is what we call real fair trade.