Kathmandu Win ISPO Award for NXT-LEVEL BioDown Jacket

New Zealand-based outdoor brand Kathmandu’s latest sustainability innovation has seen the brand awarded a revered 2022 ISPO Award. The award commends the brands NXT-LEVEL BioDown Jacket, the world’s first biodegradable insulated jacket. 

Kathmandu’s winning NXT-LEVEL BioDown Jacket is crafted entirely from biodegradable materials and was designed using ultra durable materials. The jacket promises a reliable lifelong companion for its wearers, lasting from generation to generation, before finally biodegrading, should it end up in modern landfills, at the end of its journey.

The ISPO Awards ceremony was held at Outdoor by ISPO in Munich, hosted by the leading international sports platform. The awards recognise the most outstanding products and services in the sport and outdoor industries internationally. Kathmandu was one of just 23 winners globally and the only winner representative of Australia and New Zealand. The award is an important milestone in recognising and celebrating Kathmandu’s ongoing commitment to achieving the brand’s goal to have 100 percent of Kathmandu products designed, developed and manufactured using elements of circularity principles by 2025.

Kathmandu’s winning NXT-LEVEL BioDown Jacket features a revolutionary product design, crafted entirely from biodegradable materials and designed to biodegrade in modern landfill within three - five years. Kathmandu’s design breakthrough came from a biodegradable polymer, which was utilised to treat Nylon 66, creating a mono-material biodegradable nylon that was used to develop the fabric, lining, sewing thread and zipper of the BioDown Jacket. Complete with RDS (Responsible Down Standard) 600 fill power duck down and Primaloft Bio insulation, the result is a soft, warm, light and durable jacket that is designed to biodegrade in the modern landfill environment. Wearers can feel good knowing that once the jacket reaches the end of its life, it won’t take hundreds of years to break down like standard synthetics.

Less than one percent of the materials used in textile products are recycled back into textiles and the apparel industry needs to radically scale up textile to textile recycling. Kathmandu wanted to design out waste and pollution from the start of the BioDown Jacket’s production process, and to keep the product in use for as long as possible. Its ultra-durable materials promise an extremely long lifespan, yet it is entirely biodegradable. 

“It has become the flag-bearer for our best-for-the-world circularity goals. We’re thrilled this innovation has been recognised with an ISPO Award and look forward to seeing more people out there wearing the BioDown Jacket,” said Head of Product Innovation and Product Sustainability at Kathmandu, Manu Rastogi.


86.6 percent biodegradation in 1,050+ days for outer and lining material; 94.4 percent biodegradation in 1,677+ days for zip and thread; 93.8 percent biodegradation in 646+ days for synthetic fill under ASTM D5511 conditions (being optimal conditions that may be found in some biologically active landfills)