Optical retailer GrandVision will from now on exclusively stock the sustainable spectacles of the Karün brand. These are made from waste, following a remarkable circular economic model.
Karün provides a European first with its eyewear collection that helps restore nature. Optics group Grandvision is the exclusive retail partner for the European launch. "We are launching the brand both on- and offline in more than ten European countries," says Francisco Álvarez of GrandVision. In Europe, the collection is available exclusively in France (GrandOptical, Solaris), Germany (Apollo), the Netherlands (Pearle & Eye Wish), Belgium (Pearle, GrandOptical), Sweden (Synoptik), Finland (Instrumentarium), Denmark (Synoptik), Norway (Brilleland) and Switzerland (Visilab).
Thomas Kimber, founder of Karün, talks about the company's 'Conscious Development Model': "In Patagonia, one of the last unspoilt places in the world, we work with rural communities, people who live in poverty and lack access to opportunities. The logic we apply is: how can we ensure that those local communities have the economic means to protect their natural ecosystems? How can we ensure that they have the opportunities they need, not by just giving them those opportunities, but by allowing them to develop themselves and supporting them wherever possible?"
Made from waste
The rural entrepreneurs collect different types of waste, such as fishing nets, ropes and metals, which are then recycled and turned into durable (sun)glasses. At the end of their life cycle, these are recycled again. "Eyewear is a perfect tool to invite people to look at the world from a different perspective: one in which we are all part of nature. This collaboration is an opportunity to spread that message around the world so that more people can wear what they stand for," says Thomas Kimber.
The eyewear brand is supported by actress and environmentalist Shailene Woodley, known from Big Little Lies and other series and movies. "We hear a lot of words like sustainability and eco-friendliness, especially in my world of acting and fashion. But you see much less that companies and brands actually take the steps they proclaim," she says. "We have a unique opportunity to lay the groundwork for younger generations and companies to think about the way we do business. With this collection, we prove that fashion can be used as a means of both self-expression and living in harmony with nature and its communities."