Yak’s wool social enterprise launched to rival cashmere
Monday, September 22, 2014
Tengri, a new high-end fashion label using yak’s wool, has released its first range of ethical woollens.
The brand aims to shake the dominance of cashmere clothing with its alternative soft fabric. Founded by Nancy Johnston, a former charity worker, in March this year, Tengri seeks to highlight the plight of Mongolian yak herders, many of whom can no longer make a living from their traditional, nomadic lifestyle.
“The price of cashmere has dropped drastically, leading to overgrazing and overherding of the goats to meet demand,” says Ms Johnston, who is part of the GrowthAccelerator programme for fast-growth businesses. She hopes to use the model of confectioner Divine Chocolate. The farmers will own 45pc of the business and share in its growth.
“If it works for chocolate, why not fashion?” she says.