Patagonia, Inc.
Company typePrivate benefit corporation
HeadquartersVentura, California, U.S.
Key people
Yvon Chouinard-Founder
Rose Marcario-CEO
ProductsOutdoor apparel
Revenue$209.09M (2017 estimate)
Number of employees
1000 (2017)

34°16′47″N 119°18′14″W / 34.2798°N 119.3040°W / 34.2798; -119.3040

Patagonia, Inc. is an American clothing company that sells outdoor clothing marketed as sustainable. The company was founded by Yvon Chouinard in 1973, and is based in Ventura, California.[1] Its logo is the skyline of Cerro Fitz Roy in Patagonia.


Yvon Chouinard, an accredited rock climber,[2] began selling hand forged mountain climbing gear in 1957 through his company Chouinard Equipment. He worked alone selling his gear until 1965 when he partnered with Tom Frost in order to improve his products and address the growing supply and demand issue he faced.[3]

In 1970, Chouinard obtained rugby shirts from Scotland that he wore while climbing because the collar kept the climbing sling from hurting his neck.[3][4] Collared shirts were then designed and implemented into his merchandise line and quickly became the primary product sold. Chouinard Equipment was forced to file for bankruptcy in 1989 when it lost a series of lawsuits claiming "failure to inform" of safety issues related to usage of climbing hardware including one filed by the survivors of a climber who died in a fall after slipping out of a Chouinard climbing harness. The resultant increases in their product liability insurance were cited by Chouinard as the reason they stopped making climbing gear. The liquidated assets of the climbing gear side were purchased for $900,000 by Chouinard's longtime partner, Peter Metcalf, and reorganized as Black Diamond Equipment. Yvon Chouinard retained the profitable soft goods (clothing) division of the company which had already been rebranded as Patagonia. [5]

A Patagonia store in Portland, Oregon, was located in a renovated 1895-built former warehouse until moving to a new location in 2017.

Patagonia has expanded its product line to include apparel targeted towards other sports, such as surfing.[6] In addition to clothing, they offer other products such as backpacks and sleeping bags.[citation needed]

Starting in April 2017 Patagonia merchandise can be returned for new merchandise credits. The used merchandise gets cleaned and repaired and sold on their "Worn Wear" website.[7]


Patagonia considers itself an "activist company."[8]


Patagonia commits 1% of their total sales or 10% of their profit, whichever is more, to environmental groups.[9][citation needed] Yvon Chouinard was a founding member of One Percent for the Planet, an organization that encourages other businesses to do the same.[10][11]

Politics and land preservation

On December 6, 2017, Patagonia sued the United States Government and President Donald Trump for his proclamations of reducing the Bears Ears National Monument by 85% and almost 50% of Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument.[12][13][14] The company believes that a million acres of land is at risk for permanent destruction. Patagonia is sueing over the The Property Clause of the U.S. Constitution in where it vests Congress with the power to manage federal lands. The compant contends that when Congress passed the Antiquities Act of 1906 (Pub. L.Tooltip Public Law (United States) 59–209, 34 Stat. 225, 54 U.S.C. §§ 320301320303), "Congress delegated a limited amount of power to the President — specifically, the authority to create national monuments protecting certain federal land. But it did not give the President the power to undo a prior president’s monument designations. It kept that power for itself."[15]



In 2012, UK animal activist group Four Paws said that Patagonia used live-plucked down feathers and downs of force-fed geese.[16] In a statement on their website, Patagonia denied use of live-plucking but said it had used down procured from the foie-gras industry.[17] As of fall 2014, Patagonia said it was using 100% traceable down to ensure that birds were not force-fed or live-plucked and that down is not blended with down from unknown sources.[18][19]


In February 2005, Patagonia's sourcing of wool from Australia was criticized by PETA over the practice of mulesing. Patagonia has since moved its sourcing of wool from Australia to South America and the cooperative Ovis 21. However, in August 2015 PETA released new video footage showing how sheep were treated cruelly in Ovis 21 farms.[20] This led Patagonia to stop sourcing wool from Ovis 21.[21]

In June 2016, Patagonia released a set of new wool principles that guide the treatment of animals as well as land-use practices, and sustainability.[22][23]


Many Patagonia garments are made of polyester fabric, under their trademark Capilene.


Since 1994, Patagonia has used organically-grown cotton.[24][25]


  1. ^ Nelson, Mike (July 2, 2017). "Patagonia's child care center serves employees and their families". Ventura County Star. Retrieved 3 July 2016.
  2. ^ Wang, Jennifer. "Patagonia, From the Ground Up". Entrepreneur. Retrieved 2016-04-26.
  3. ^ a b "Patagonia's History - A Company Created by Climber Yvon Chouinard and his commitment to the Environment (catalog paper, organic and recycled fabrics )". Retrieved 2016-04-26.
  4. ^ Stevenson, Seth. "Patagonia's Founder Is America's Most Unlikely Business Guru". Wall Street Journal. ISSN 0099-9660. Retrieved 2016-04-26.
  5. ^ Steiner, Christopher (September 10, 2014). "A Fight For The Mountaintop: Yvon Chouinard's Disciple Challenges Patagonia". Forbes. Retrieved 5 August 2016.
  6. ^ "Patagonia stakes a wider claim on the beach". Men's Vogue. Archived from the original on May 12, 2008. Retrieved March 27, 2008. ((cite web)): Unknown parameter |deadurl= ignored (|url-status= suggested) (help)
  7. ^ Feldman, Jamie (2017-01-30). "Patagonia Just Made Another Major Move To Save The Earth And Your Wallet". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2017-03-17.
  8. ^ Patagonia, "The Activist Company" [1]
  9. ^ "Environmentalism: Environmental & Social Responsibility". Patagonia. Patagonia. Retrieved 16 October 2017.
  10. ^ March 29, 2017. "1% for the Planet". Newf Surfboard Net. Retrieved 2017-03-31.((cite web)): CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  11. ^ Hemlock, Doreen (27 May 2013). "One Percent for The Planet: Businesses commit to donate 1 percent of sales to environmental nonprofits - tribunedigital-sunsentinel". Sun Sentinel. Retrieved 15 September 2016.
  12. ^ Office of the Press Secretary (December 4, 2017). "Presidential Proclamation Modifying the Bears Ears National Monument". Washington, D.C.: White House. Retrieved December 6, 2017.
  13. ^ Guild, Blair (December 4, 2017). "Trump downsizes Bears Ears and Grand Staircase national monuments". CBS News. New York City: CBS. Retrieved December 6, 2017.
  14. ^ Office of the Press Secretary (December 4, 2017). "Presidential Proclamation Modifying the Grand Staircase-Escalante National Monument". Washington, D.C.: White House. Retrieved December 6, 2017.
  15. ^ Marcario, Rose (December 6, 2017). "Patagonia CEO: This Is Why We're Suing President Trump". Time. New York City: Time Inc. Retrieved December 6, 2017.
  16. ^ "Outdoor Company Patagonia: Down from brutal force-feeding". Four Paws. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  17. ^ "The Lowdown on Down: An Update". The Cleanest Line. Retrieved 24 February 2012.
  18. ^ [2]
  19. ^
  20. ^ "Patagonia's 'Sustainable Wool' Supplier EXPOSED: Lambs Skinned Alive, Throats Slit, Tails Cut Off". PETA Investigations. Retrieved 2016-05-09.
  21. ^ "The Cleanest Line: Patagonia to Cease Purchasing Wool from Ovis 21". Retrieved 2016-05-09.
  22. ^ Michelson, Megan (2016-07-29). "Want Ethically Sourced Wool? Buy from Patagonia". Outside Online. Retrieved 2017-01-20.
  23. ^ "Patagonia Wool Standard" (PDF). Patagonia. 2016.
  24. ^ Patagonia, "20 years of organic cotton" [3]
  25. ^ Patagonia, "Organic Cotton", [4]