Effort to assist queen butterflies gets boost in market

Effort to assist emperor butterflies gets boost in market

Associated Press

by Associated Press In this Aug. 19, 2018 picture, a monarch butterfly sips nectar from a zinnia flower in Vineeta Anand’s garden in Alexandria, Va. Anand, whose garden is a registered monarch waystation with King Watch, tends several ranges of milkweed in her garden, drawing in monarchs each year. In Quebec, an initiative to expand milkweed production and assist the monarch population has been increased by a restored commitment from Quartz Co. of the Montreal location to make and offer high-end coats using the fiber.

( AP Photo/Cal Woodward) MONTREAL (AP)– An effort to market milkweed for the benefit of king butterflies– and the farmers in Quebec and Vermont who grow it– is getting a boost from a Canadian parka business that is renewing its dedication to sell coats made with the plant’s floss.It’s an experimental production and retailing effort, which started in 2016 when Quartz Co. made and sold a few hundred coats with milkweed fiber as the insulation. After modest growth of its distribution last year, the company is introducing its third generation in September and extra designs in October.Having served as

a testing room, said Francois-Xavier Robert, Quartz Co.’s chief running officer, “We seem like we are close to having a major item.”North America’s severely depleted population of emperors depends for its survival on milkweed, the sole host for the eggs and only food for the caterpillars. Efforts to bring back monarchs rest in part on establishing new lands for the plant to grow. Research indicates plots of milkweed in farmers’fields are especially appealing to the queens, perhaps more so than roadside stretches and metropolitan spots that butterflies may or may not find.Quebec scientists developed a method to change fiber from the long-undesired weed into a lightweight insulation that can change down and synthetics. But the effort has actually been bumpy, with the preliminary producer of the fiber collapsing in 2015. Gathering and production technology is immature; hand-picking the crop is often needed to yield the silky fibers needed for high-end clothes. Farmers harvest milkweed in the fall after the migrating emperors have actually had their fill and moved south.More than 100 farmers in Quebec and a half lots in Vermont are growing milkweed for the Monark co-operative, tapping Quartz Co. as their only market for the clothing insulation. Parkas from Quartz, based outside Montreal, are sold in more than 275 shops in 20 countries in addition to online.Robert and his sibling, Jean-Philippe Robert, the Quartz president, are entrepreneurs in their early 30s who bought the business in 2015 and developed a leadership team of their

own generation. “When we heard about milkweed we leapt on it, “stated Francois-Xavier Robert.”It’s part of our generation to be a bit more environmentally friendly and accountable. The project seemed pretty lined up with our values.”

Be the first to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.