Cam and Elise Greenwood from Zorali are the type of people you’d love to share a campfire with.
Adventure brand Zorali was created by Cam and Elise Greenwood to inspire people to get outside and explore the wonders of the natural world. What's better, Zorali products are made with sustainable fabrics and ethical practices to ensure you aren't causing any unnecessary harm to nature as you explore it. Cam and Elise took some time away from climbing mountains and chasing waterfalls to explain how the brand began and what's in store for the future. Hint: it involves 1 million trees.
Outdoor brand Zorali was created by Cam and Elise Greenwood to inspire people to get outside and explore the wonders of the natural world. What’s better, Zorali products are made with sustainable fabrics and ethical practices to ensure you aren’t causing any unnecessary harm to nature as you explore it. Cam and Elise took some time away from climbing mountains and chasing waterfalls to explain how the brand began and what’s in store for the future. Hint: it involves 1 million trees.
What made you start Zorali?
Every dream starts somewhere. Ours was simply born from a deep love for the wild and a desire to see people experience nature’s goodness in their own restorative way. So we created Zorali to inspire people to do just that. Zorali means going where you won’t need fancy gear – your own two feet will do. Going where the air comes at breathable altitudes, where your mind feels free from stress and strife and struggle.
For us, Zorali is an adventure. An invisible path even more exhilarating than the ones we take through the trees and over the boulders. What’s around the corner? Who knows. But as long as there are corners to explore, we’ll keep asking. The open road as our guide, and the sunshine our soulmate.
Do you have a morning routine? If so what is it you do to set yourself up for the day ahead?
Our days start with a cold swim in the ocean (even in winter!) Yes, we are the crazy people you see out there on the cold and rugged Victorian Coastline! We work from home (in Ocean Grove) so we usually get stuck into work around 9am. It’s not always easy working from home but we try to keep a structure to our day as much as possible (unless the surfs good – and then Cam is usually MIA for a few hours haha).
Starting the day in nature keeps us happy, healthy and inspired. We’re super grateful to have this luxury.
What’s the biggest barrier you’ve found to succeeding as a socially conscious business?
Ensuring high standards are met across every area of the business – especially in the early days when it’s easy to be tempted into short cuts or quick wins that may compromise your vision. Protecting our business means protecting our planet first. We can’t have one without the other – and, call us greedy, but we really want them both! So we’ve had to be really strong in ensuring that everything we create and everything we do is designed and operated through a lens of sustainability.
Within the ethical fashion community, there’s a big question that we ask which is ‘who made my clothes?’. In the scope of Zorali, who made the things you sell? Can you tell us a bit about them?
We sure can! We love the suppliers that we work with. And I mean sure, we like to escape the crowds and talk to trees. But we care deeply about humans, too. Our code of conduct ensures all the people in our supply chain are treated well, paid properly and have a safe spot to work. And we take time to chat face-to-face with our factories – when we can get the trees to hush that is.
One of our favourite partners is Hemp Fortex. We love this partnership because Hemp Fortex believe in what we do — to be good stewards of this planet. They are leaders in sustainable fabrics – focusing their expertise on Hemp and Organic cotton fibres. A highlight for us on a recent visit earlier this year was seeing fabric off-cuts (that would otherwise go to waste) being collected and recycled into new yarn.
Why did you pick the fabrics you have chosen to work with?
For us, the first step in creating our products is to choose the most responsible (& functional) material to suit the purpose of the purpose.
The main fabrics we use and LOVE are hemp, organic cotton and recycled fabrics. By using these environmentally friendly fibres, we like to think we’re helping you connect with nature before you’ve even stepped out the door.
– Hemp is breathable and soft. Plus it’s good at removing carbon dioxide from the air and keeping its impact lower than a drunken game of limbo.
– Organic cotton is gentle on your bod, and doesn’t put chemicals or pesticides into the soil. And while its non-organic sibling takes pretty long showers, the organic kind is much better with water.
– Recycled fabrics keep waste out of landfill, reduce demand for petroleum-based raw materials, and limit contamination of the air, soil and water. What a little workhorse.
Best piece of advice you have ever received?
When we stepped out in faith to start Zorali, a lot of people thought we were crazy to try and make something from nothing. It was hard to navigate through all the noise. But one of our mentors shared this quote with us and it really inspired us to keep moving forward towards the future we imagined:
“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” ― Theodore Roosevelt
What’s next for you and Zorali?
With good business, we believe we can do good things for the future. By 2025, we aim to:
– Close the loop, ensuring everything we make can keep going ‘round and ‘round through repairs, resales and recycling.
– Ensure all makers are environmentally certified, ethical, transparent and the kind of people we’d love to share a campfire with.
– Grow our own forest. Our goal is to plant 1 million trees by 2025. Wild, huh? Good. That’s just how we like it.
This fire in our gut won’t burn out like Sunday night campsite. It’s a roaring commitment to keep pushing hard for the good of the planet. Watch as we continue to update our goals and progress, as we deepen our contribution.
One book and/or documentary everyone should read/watch? Why?
Chapter One by Daniel Flynn. Super inspiring read for anyone who wants to change the world!
The Live Passionately Film. A really fun (& inspiring) doco about surfing and water filtration made by Cam and his best mates back in 2017: “We’re blessed to be a blessing”, here.
Are there any other Movers & Shakers out there in your world that you think people should know about?
Daniel and Justine Flynn, Founders of Thankyou are good friends of ours and have been a massive inspiration to us – not only in business but also (& more importantly) in how to live a beautiful life of love.