It’s the season to reflect on the year past, celebrate achievements, process milestones, and set ambitious plans for the year ahead. Last year was an exciting one here at Canopy – we were honoured, celebrated exciting firsts, broke new milestones and were continually encouraged to reach new heights by our brands, funders, and community. We were also deeply saddened by the loss of two beloved colleagues that we still miss every day. We hope our work going forward will always honour their memories.
All of this reflection helps us better understand our big ambitions – to preserve 30 – 50% of the world’s forests by 2030, and to help usher in a time of Next Generation, circular forms of production that will see new technologies grow, economic opportunities increase, and sourcing pressure shifted away from vital forests. We know it’s a bold vision, but we also know that it is the change our planet needs.
Please join us in celebrating these top moments from 2022. We look forward to sharing more news and successes with you in the year to come.
Best Non-Awards-Season Awards
In late May, our Founder and Executive Director, Nicole Rycroft, was one of three people awarded the Meritorious Service Cross of Canada by the Governor General of Canada. The Meritorious Service Cross recognizes great Canadians for accomplishing exceptional deeds that bring honour to Canada.
In August, Canopy received the Keeling Curve Prize, which is awarded annually to ten of the world’s highest-impact climate initiatives “with a proven track record of taking greenhouse gasses out of the atmosphere”.
And just this month, Nicole was named a Sustainability Thought Leader by Vogue Business.
We are so honoured to have Canopy’s work recognized in this way and hope to live up to these accolades by passionately continuing our work on behalf of the world’s forests.
Best Art for the Forests
In 2022 we again collaborated with some wildly talented artists to draw attention to the need to protect forests.
This year’s International Day of Forests celebrations included a Tree Talks event with writer Michael Christie, about his novel Greenwood, and the vital role that forests play in his multigenerational family saga, and in the world.
In June, world-renowned photographer Edward Burtynsky joined Canopy’s Nicole Rycroft for another Tree Talks event. Their talk explored the impact of humanity’s ‘progress’ and what a sustainable path forward to protect both people and the planet might look like. The lively discussion also featured some of the iconic photographs featured in Burtynsky’s latest work.
In August, international bodypainting artist Filippo ioco, known for his unique style of camouflaging the human body into different environments, produced a series of evocative images capturing the body blended into old-growth forests and clear-cut landscapes. This statement of humanity’s connection to and dependence on the world’s forests was created to compel local and global decision-makers to take action to keep old-growth forests standing.
Best Brand Milestones
On World Rainforest Day in June, Canopy made a delicious match with ice cream company Ben & Jerry’s when they became the first food brand in the Pack4Good initiative — committing to ensure its paper packaging does not come at the expense of the world’s most vital forest ecosystems.
In October, the CanopyStyle initiative surpassed 500 global fashion designers and apparel brands. Together, the now more than 515 brands represent more than 857 billion USD in collective annual revenue, and are all committed to keeping products from vital forests out of their fabric supply chains and to spurring the production of low-carbon, Next Gen alternatives.
Best of the Next Generation (or Best News You’ve Heard Lately About Pulp)
In October, Veuve Clicquot launched an industry first with Canopy at LuxePack Monaco. The company’s new Ecoyellow giftbox is a low-carbon, low-impact, virgin tree-free, luxury champagne box made from 50% recycled paper and 50% hemp. The breakthrough box is part of the brand’s work to spur packaging innovation, and is the latest advance in their commitment to the Pack4Good initiative.
In November, the world’s first commercial-scale textile-to-textile pulp mill held its official opening in Sundsvall, Sweden. ‘Renewcell 1’ is the first of a new generation of climate-friendly mills that shift viscose production from being a linear extractive supply chain — with significant impact on the world’s forests, biodiversity, and climate — to low-impact, circular production. The facility will repurpose over 120,000 metric tonnes of textile waste next year, otherwise destined for landfills, and turn it into new viscose for fashion. Canopy’s Nicole Rycroft and Valerie Langer were on hand to perform a dramatic banner drop to launch the mill.
Best Showing at COPs
Canopy staff members attended COP27 in Egypt in November to join with leading companies including, H&M, Inditex, Stella McCartney, Ben & Jerry’s, HH Global, and Kering, to announce a collective commitment to purchase over half a million tonnes of low-carbon, low-footprint alternative fibre for fashion textiles and paper packaging. It is a move that will support the protection of the world’s vital forests and ecosystems and lower forest degradation pressure from the fashion and packaging supply chains.
This month, at the Conference on Biological Diversity in Montreal (COP15), Canopy staff members continued to amplify the message that protecting forests is one of our best hopes to protect the planet and the 30 by 30 targets scientists have set are non-negotiable.
Best Media Splash(es)
It’s not every day that you’re surprised to see something you created on the cover of Cosmopolitan Magazine, but that’s what happened to us in February. The iconic red dress, which was made for our Circular Chic campaign, graced the cover of the 50th anniversary edition of Cosmopolitan UK.
The bespoke dress, worn by cover model Monroe Bergdorf, is made of Liva Reviva, a viscose fabric made with 30% cotton textile scraps. The cotton scraps, normally a waste product, are regenerated into pristine Next Generation fibre.
And if Cosmo wasn’t exciting enough, on International Day of Forests in March, an op-ed about the importance of forests to preserving climate and biodiversity, written by Canopy’s Nicole Rycroft, and professor and Canopy board member Suzanne Simard, was published in Time Magazine online.
Best Tools for Fibre Enthusiasts (not that kind of fibre)
Last spring Canopy’s EcoPaper Database — the world’s largest compilation of recycled and Next Gen paper and packaging options — was updated and expanded. This latest EcoPaper Database (EPD) features over 1,100 paper and paper packaging options currently available that help businesses reduce their impact on Ancient and Endangered Forests and meet their sustainability goals.
Hot on the heels of the announcement of the CanopyStyle 500, we were pleased to share more good news with the 2022 Hot Button Report and Ranking. This in-depth assessment of global viscose producers helps our (515 and counting) partner brands implement their CanopyStyle policies and take action to protect forests and climate. The Hot Button Ranking also recognizes viscose producers that have improved their sustainability practices and engaged their own supply chains for the benefit of the world’s forests and to forward Next Generation Solutions.
This year was a year of MORE for the Hot Button, with more ‘green shirt’ producers, more Next Generation textiles being offered, and more conservation work undertaken by viscose producers than ever before.
As we look forward to 2023 we will continue this mantra of more—more brands, more Next Gen solutions, more conservation for forests, and more care for the planet. We hope you will join us for the ride.