As a boy, Brett Diaz got into fishing and the outdoors the same way many kids do – with his father and grandfather. From them he also learned the family business, clothing manufacturing. Today, he’s combined those two loves to build a company that’s both stylish and styled on ocean conservation.
HOOK 360° is an apparel and accessories company seeking to help the planet and work towards leaving our land and sea in a better place for the next generation. Influenced by such brands as Patagonia and REI Co-op, Brett Diaz, and his father, Roy Diaz, started the business in August of 2018. The father-son partnership offers men and women gear with orders that go towards protecting coral reefs with the Coral Restoration Foundation. In line with that ocean-protecting ethos, every order is packaged with recycled paper and wax sealed. Every item is shipped with the lowest carbon footprint possible.
Brett Diaz wanted to create a company that firstly represents both the environment and customers. “I was disgusted by how much wasteful packaging, especially plastic, that other companies put out there,” Diaz says. “I wanted to create a company that stood for outdoors, protected the outdoors, with quality performance and casual gear that puts the environment and customer first.”
Whether you’re fishing, camping, kayaking, or biking, HOOK 360° provides products such as short and long sleeves T-shirts, headwear, shorts, accessories such as stainless steel straws, and more, all made in the USA.
One of their most popular items is the Pro-Series Performance shirt. A shirt for those who plan on being in the sun for a while, it has a side-vent mesh for extra airflow to high sweat areas
It’s a hit with the people who wear it. One customer review says the mission behind this business makes them that much better. “The shipping was extremely quick and the packaging was perfect even without plastic,” the review says. “Their program helping to restore coral reefs make them even better.”
HOOK 360° sales go towards coral reef protection, and they’re also a member of the global environmental solutions group 1% For the Planet. It focuses on everything from destructive fishing habits to coral mining to climate change.
The Coral Restoration Foundation is the world’s largest non-profit marine-conservation organization dedicated to restoring coral reefs to a healthy state. Diaz says reefs play a role in our ecosystem just as important as trees.
“Coral reefs are the lungs and the heart of the ocean and like trees, the ocean produces the world’s oxygen,” Diaz says. “It’s not just one time of the year, but every single order donates to our cause. We want everyone to know we’re putting our money where our mouth is and we’ve been doing it since the start.”
Even though HOOK 360° is a newer company, the Diaz family has been in the clothing industry since the 1980s. Roy Diaz has family roots that tie back to Hialeah with the family business, Zaida Fashions. Brett learned about the clothing business from his father and grandparents, and believes his childhood memories prepared him for today.
“My grandparents always sewed my whole life and I was always around manufacturing clothing, and I always thought it was very cool,” he says.
His grandfather, Rogelio Diaz, also loved fishing and the outdoors. He passed away four years ago, but he created a lasting impression on his grandson. “That passion for nature my grandfather had inspired me for HOOK 360°,” Brett Diaz says. “Even though he is not here, I know he would really, really like all this.”
He would also undoubtedly approve of the work his grandson and others put into cleaning up the beach. HOOK 360° participates and coordinates regular beach cleanups and have partnered with Delray Beach marine life center the Sandoway Discovery Center. They collect plenty of plastic bags, straws and even tires. More recently, Brett Diaz has started seeing vaping accessories.
“All that vaping stuff like the little plastic cartridges, bottles, the droppers, we’re finding like crazy,” he says. “The vaping industry just like the cigarette industry are really hurting our shores more than people know.”
All together HOOK 360° has collected 5,000 pounds of trash; each cleanup gets around 200 to 500 pounds – while also getting young people involved in the process and seeing what happens to the ecosystem. “Doing all this makes me feel like a kid and it’s important we give back and reach out to children,” Diaz says. “I think it’s important to teach kids and inspire them about the planet.”