Gwendolyn Hustvedt is an Associate Professor in Fashion Merchandising at Texas State University. Her research focuses on the lifestyle of health and sustainability (LOHAS) consumer. Past projects include a survey of consumer willingness to pay for animal welfare certification for wool products with collaborators at Kansas State University and an experimental auction designed to measure consumer sensitivity to biotechnology in the fiber supply chain with collaborators at University of Delaware. Results from these studies have been published in the International Journal of Consumer Studies (Sep, 2008). In 2007, she also received a grant from Nike, Inc. to conduct an experimental auction study of labeling for socially responsible apparel products.
The USDA Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education (SARE) program made a $140,000 to Hustvedt and co-investigators Dr. John Bernard and Dr. Hikaru Hanawa-Peterson to study consumer willingness to pay for eco-labeling on US produced animal fiber products. The goal of the study is to help US wool, mohair and alpaca producers compete in the global market for LOHAS consumers.
Students working with Hustvedt are exploring microscopic identification of mislabeled apparel products made from rayon made from bamboo and the stain removal efficacy of eco-friendly laundry detergents. Future work will include in vivo experiments to demonstrate the ability of textiles to help prevent skin cancer and product development projects with natural fiber producers across Texas. Hustvedt teaches basic Textile Science, a freshman level course open to all majors, as well as Textile Product Analysis, a course focusing on quality apparel production. In Spring 2009, Hustvedt introduced an honors course called Fibers to Fabric to explore the issues of environmental, economic and social sustainability related to the textile supply chain.
“My goal is to provide the knowledge required by an environmentally sustainable fiber, textile and apparel production supply chain to create products that will help consumers fulfill their goals of living a healthy and sustainable lifestyle.”