Plein-Air Wool® is the term used for wool that comes from sheep which live outside all year round. This livestock husbandry results in a naturally more curly and longer fiber. The strong natural curl provides lasting resilience, bounce and loft that is superior to mechanically crimped wool fiber which will matt down faster. The artificial crimping process used by some wool producers creates strain on the fibers causing them to break easier which results in shorter fibers. This has a direct negative effect on the long-term resilience and loft of the product.
There are zero chemicals used during the wool growing and processing steps. The sheep are not dipped or treated with any pesticides or herbicides. The plein-air wool is harvested from the back and belly only. This is a very important factor as usually wool for "fill" (as opposed to garments) also comes from the legs and crotch of the animal, and it is impossible to completely wash out the smell. After shearing, the wool goes through three washing cycles with increasing temperatures (90° - 140°F) followed by a cold rinse in pure water. During the washing cycles pure baking soda and water is used – nothing else. The drying takes place in drum driers and the wool is then cooled down on cooling racks for 24-28 hours before pressing and packaging.
After the washing process the lanolin (oil) content of the wool is less than 1%. This virtually eliminates the typical sheep odor and the risk of moth infestation.
Plein-air wool® is extremely clean and considered free of harmful substances. The following certificates are available attesting to this fact: