Get access to everything we publish when you sign up for Outside+.
Mason, OH, August 3, 2021 — Downlite Outdoor, a division of Downlite, a market leader in down and feather processing and a supplier of responsibly sourced performance fills to the outdoor, home furnishings, and hospitality markets, announces a major breakthrough in USA down processing with brand partner FORLOH.
The only technical hunting brand offering 100% Made-in-America apparel and gear, FORLOH’s commitment to American manufacturing includes sourcing all materials and technologies in the US. The result of this commitment has produced state-of-the-art products for serious hunters and outdoor enthusiasts and upended the technical apparel manufacturing paradigm.
When looking for a US supplier who could produce an 800 Fill Power (FP) down for an upcoming winter-weather product collection, FORLOH knew Ohio’s Downlite fit the bill. Previously unattainable, U.S. Downlite Outdoor has conquered one of the most difficult challenges in the history of down processing.
“FORLOH asked us for 800 Fill Power (FP), which requires a higher ‘Cluster to Feather’ ratio that is unheard of in the industry from US material,” says Lindsay Parrish, Vice President of Sales at Downlite Outdoor. “Originally, we thought we could only sort US White Duck Down to 750FP. We honestly had never done this before; nobody has tried this with US-sourced down and feather. We thought above 750FP unattainable. Sorting down is a real art, it takes years of experience. Our in-house experts, who have a combined 75 years of knowledge, further refined their sorting process, reversing normal processes of washing, drying and sorting. The result from 3rd party testing labs was 800FP, unheard of for a 100% US down product!”
FORLOH’s pledge to solely manufacture in the US compelled the brand’s product research and development team, comprised of top-tier leaders in the outdoor industry, to build their own US-supply chain. The team started looking beyond ‘traditional’ solutions and began forging relationships and sourcing from powerful, atypical partners ranging from NASA to the HVAC industry. In fact, FORLOH already utilizes Downlite’s USA White Peking Duck Down, 650FP Cluster/ Feather, a luxurious product with ActivDri® DWR added. The USA White Peking Duck is exclusive to Downlite, farmed by the Indiana Amish, four hours from the Ohio headquarters. The farms have free roaming and use reclaimed water for feed – an incredible story of welfare and sustainability.
“I believe FORLOH’s US-focused production mindset has brought together the best of American manufacturers and raw material suppliers. With truly the salt of the earth people, we’re blessed to partner with, as we continue building the most innovative technical performance brand with products from right here in our backyard. We are beyond impressed with Downlite Outdoor and thrilled they are able to supply the highest level of down, made in the USA, for our future collections,” adds Robert Yturri, Chief Product Officer at FORLOH.
Downlite has a rich history in feather and down sourcing, with origins dating back more than 100 years in Europe. Downlite is the largest US supplier of bedding for the home and hospitality industries (Macy’s, Costco, Marriott International, W Hotels). Downlite is also one of the largest suppliers of bulk down and feather to apparel and sleeping bag makers in the outdoor industry. A leader in responsible sourcing, Downlite is proud to have been awarded the first RDS Scope Certificate. Additionally, Downlite was offered the first TDS-Certified supply chain in the world — both from Europe and the US. Downlite has four US-based manufacturing sites and one manufacturing site in Canada; its sourcing teams are based in China, Europe, and the US. Downlite is bluesign system partner, and a proud member of the American Feather & Down Council.
Some current Downlite customers include Patagonia, The North Face, Marmot, Mammut, Kuhl, REI, Canada Goose, Lululemon, Ralph Lauren, Columbia Sportswear, Haglofs, Cascade Design, and Banana Republic.
The only brand that makes 100-percent American-made hunting apparel, FORLOH is a technology company that focuses on the hunting and outdoor markets. Based in Whitefish, Mont., FORLOH uses a range of cutting-edge and proprietary technologies to improve performance in areas like breathability, waterproofing, insulation, heating and cooling. Through FORLOH’s connections with U.S. manufacturers, it has adopted and applied technologies from other industries, such as NASA or the automotive industry, to create unique performance characteristics that other manufacturers are not offering. It is focused on how its products work together to create an apparel system that performs better. At its core, FORLOH is dedicated to enabling customers to forge deeper connections with the outdoors through use of better technology. Join the future today at FORLOH.com and join the conversation on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.