Leaf of Faith! Visor Leaf and their Biodegradable Tear Offs!
There has been no Tear Offmagedan this winter from the ACU. In fact it’s been fairly quiet on the Tear off ban front for the last 12 months or so. The attack against the clear plastic film that we discard with reckless abandon in the quest for clear vision seems to have abated, but all of that aside a larger number of landowners are banning them, mountainbike trails have given them their marching orders and it won’t be too long before the head honcho’s at ACU house ban them temporarily or possibly for good.
We might battle the odds in the favour of pulling a tear off over the burden of roll off’s but lets think of the bigger picture. Thousands of these plastic film’s get thrown into our countryside on a weekly basis, which certainly does our sport no good when trying to obtain new tracks and land, and not forgetting, these little bleaters don’t go anywhere, they litter up the woods, our beaches, our fields, can cause harm to wildlife….
But hey lets not get too heavy because a saviour has arrived in the form of Visor Leaf and their Biodegradable Tear offs. Armed with a Degree in Environmental Consultancy, Mountain Biker Tom and his Moto buddy Rupert were ripping it up at Chicksands when they heard about tear offs being banned on the trails, and then they saw it first hand on a trip to the Forest of Dean.
Tom picks up the story “I was quite intrigued by what tear offs were, and I didn’t realise they were such a used product or the environmental effect they had. It got me to thinking why can’t we make these Biodegradable and that’s what started a two year mission to create what we have now”.
“I learnt that the Forest of Dean had spent £10’000 clearing them up from their trails and the Mountainbike market has really taken to our concept and philosophy. My business partner Rupert rides Motocross so that is a market we feel they have real value in, as well as Enduro where Tear off’s are banned by some landowners”.
DH: So how long does it take for the tear off’s to actually biodegrade?
Tom “They Biodegrade at about the same speed as a leaf which is about 12 to 20 weeks depending on the conditions, climate and environment they are in. We would still always recommend picking them up if you see one lying around but if one did fly off into the woods it’s not going to be around 100 years later.”
DH: So what are they made of and where?
Tom: “They are made 100% from Woodpulp so from a completely sustainable source. We make them yourselves in Bristol”.
DH: They evoke an image of being quite misty and dark but on seeing them that’s not the case…
Tom “The feedback and has been amazing, and all positive. We have had so many great endorsements too. We worked really hard and did countless test’s and prototypes to make sure we had the clarity we wanted. They only get slightly hazy if you have a giant stack on your goggles but otherwise you wouldn’t know the difference”.
DH: What is the plan now?
Tom “It’s all now about spreading the word, letting people know there is an alternative and that they have a choice on what they use and what they throw into the wilderness. There has been talk of the plastic type being banned in the UK, so we will keep an eye out for that and we hope we can liase with Motocross and Enduro clubs to work with them at venues Tear off’s cause a problem at”
DH: What Goggles do you provide them for?
Tom “At the moment we cover the main brands, Oakley, 100%, Scott, Rip N Roll and Smith. We will be bringing them out for further brands in the near future.”
DH: How much are they and where can we buy them?
Tom “They retail for £4.25 and can be found in a growing number of stockists and online stores and of course on our own website www.visorleaf.com. You can also follow us on Instagram and Facebook just look up Visor Leaf”.