Engineering sustainable performance for sporting and outdoor goods
The most ecological gear will
be the best performing
The most ecological gear will be the best performing
We help passionate sports and outdoor brands build high-performance gear with the lowest possible carbon footprint, to protect our fragile natural ecosystems, and to preserve the emotions we experience in nature and the lessons we learn from sport, for future generations.
PDA Ecolab is built on the belief that Passion Demands Action; our love for wild places and winter sports impels us to push the boundaries of what is possible with sustainable solutions for the equipment that we use.
How did we get here?
Fiberglass and carbon fiber composites have revolutionized sporting goods, dramatically increasing the levels of performance, accessibility, and enjoyment—whether you are a world champion or weekend warrior.
But those materials also have a profound ecological cost. Together, fiberglass and carbon fiber consumption in the sports and outdoor industry contributes to over 1.9 million metric tons of annual greenhouse gas emissions. That’s the equivalent of almost 1 billion liters of oil—every single year*… Moreover, the complexity of these composite products makes them difficult, if not impossible, to recycle efficiently.
Unfortunately, the state of the art in alternative, bio-based materials, such as renewable vegetable fibers, does not provide the same mechanical properties as synthetic fibers, meaning the level of performance simply doesn’t meet manufacturer or consumer demands.
SOLVING THE PROBLEM
Instead of relying solely on direct, “one-to-one” replacements for extracted materials, PDA Ecolab takes a holistic approach to reduce the carbon footprint and increase the circularity of sporting goods, while enhancing the level of performance.
We start with the materials themselves, creating unique, patent-pending solutions for natural fiber composite reinforcements and other bio-based materials which can be used as “drop-in” alternatives. Then, to push the level of performance higher, we optimize the product structure to unlock more of the potential of these unique materials. Finally, if necessary, we re-engineer fabrication methods for material compatibility and to further enhance the performance of the end product.
Using the need to find more ecological solutions as an opportunity to enhance performance, PDA Ecolab develops sustainable raw materials and components for the sports and outdoor industries.
Our research focuses on optimizing the performance of natural fibers and bio-based materials—using low-impact processes and unique material combinations—to enhance strength and provide the sensations that passionate users demand, while reducing carbon impact.
Our portfolio will include a range of natural fiber composite reinforcements, as well as structural and protective components, based on renewable and bio-based materials.
IP & TECHNICAL SERVICES
Hand-in-hand with our materials R&D process, PDA Ecolab develops intellectual property that maximizes the benefit of those natural fiber composite reinforcements in specific product applications. We focus on product recyclability and circularity, structural engineering to enhance performance and reduce waste, and fabrication technologies so that sporting goods manufacturers can bring sustainable, high-performing products to market more quickly.
Our favorite sports brands become favorites because they have their own perspective on what makes a great product. To ensure they can continue to build those unique products with their own specific feel, PDA Ecolab offers custom development services, as well as IP adaptation and customization for specific applications.
PDA Ecolab been accepted into this year’s “Parrainage by OSV” (or “Mentorship by OSV”) program, for promising sports industry start-ups, run by Outdoor Sports Valley.
Founded in 2020 in the heart of the French Alps, PDA Ecolab is a small team of outdoor enthusiasts driven to protect our fragile alpine ecosystems and beloved mountain communities. With more than 20 years in product innovation—from skis to tennis rackets, bicycles to footwear—as well as diverse backgrounds in business, engineering and technology, we have a wealth of experience in bringing successful products to market.
We make no claims to having perfect solutions and we expect challenges along the way. But we believe in being aggressive, starting now, and improving continuously so that we can enjoy the sports we’ve come to love with gear built in the most sustainable way.
PDA Ecolab is supported by a strong local, national and international network of partners, across outdoor industry, financial, impact and start-up ecosystems.
* Nova Institute 2019; State of the Composites Industry 2020; US Environmental Protection Agency