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Eco-friendly fashion – Where are we still falling short?

11 October 2019 | Guest author

Despite current efforts to create more eco-friendly fashion, the industry needs a more deliberate approach to integrating sustainability across the entire value chain. Here Feng Xin, VP of downstream business & corporate development at viscose major Sateri, sets out three key areas that should be addressed.... read more


Why the fashion industry must get ahead of its massive pollution problem

8 August 2019 | Guest author

Levi Strauss has taken the lead on climate commitment – but where does the rest of the fashion industry stand today? asks Todd Paglia, executive director at Stand.earth.... read more


How to support a virtuous sourcing circle in Ethiopia

24 May 2019 | Guest author

From Bangladesh to Ethiopia, garment manufacturing is a potential path to economic development. But this will only happen if Western brands and retailers adopt specific sourcing practices, according to Dorothée Baumann-Pauly and Auret van Heerden from the NYU Stern Center for Business and Human Rights.... read more


Activating brand purpose – and putting it to work at Wrangler

23 April 2019 | Guest author

Over the last few years, there's been a lot of compelling information demonstrating the importance of a brand or organisation's purpose. Just like mission, vision, and values before it, purpose is gaining in critical mass as an organisational architecture trend. Here, Roian Atwood, director of sustainability for Wrangler and Lee jeans, discusses the methodologies involved in discovering brand purpose – and how it was put into practice at Wrangler.... read more


Supply chain transparency for sustainable fashion

4 April 2019 | Guest author

Consumers are becoming increasingly vigilant about the clothing they wear each day, seeking out more sustainable options, as well as information on supply chains, production processes and product afterlife. Which is why there's an ongoing need for consumer education, as well as collaboration among all stakeholders to redefine the standard of transparency practices across the industry value chain, says Dr Florian Heubrandner, vice president of global business management textiles, at Lenzing AG. ... read more


Looming Accord closure a risk to Bangladesh sourcing

22 November 2018 | Guest author

A crash in slow motion – it's the only way one can describe the looming economic fallout should Bangladesh refuse to extend the Accord on Fire and Building Safety. In just one week's time the Bangladesh Government may force this landmark agreement to stop operating out of Dhaka: a disaster for apparel workers' safety in an industry scarred by tragedy.... read more


Under the microscope – How forensic science provides proof of provenance

21 November 2018 | Guest author

Ethics have never been more important to consumers. From sustainability to fair trade and welfare standards, savvy brands know it is vital to ensure that ethical production, not just price, is hardwired into their supply chains. But in an age where products often cross multiple borders and pass through several sets of hands before reaching the shelves, how can producers, manufacturers, suppliers and retailers ensure they can back up their claims on the label?... read more


Combatting endemic challenges to overhaul factory safety

10 October 2018 | Guest author

The Bangladesh experience represents a model for what factory safety reform might look like in other low-resource contexts. But now is a critical time to ensure there is no backsliding that could threaten the incredible progress made so far, writes Kathleen Almand, vice president of research, data and analytics at the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA).... read more


China’s factories about to pay a lot more in payroll taxes

3 October 2018 | Guest author

For years Chinese factories failed to enroll workers onto the country's social insurance scheme. But things could be about to change. From January next year responsibility for collecting payroll taxes will pass from the local social security bureau to local tax authorities, who have the capability and corporate tax data to ensure much better levels of compliance.... read more


Making your fashion brand more ethical and sustainable

20 June 2018 | Guest author

Today's consumers are increasingly concerned their purchases should be inflicting the least possible harm on the environment and societies around the globe. As a consequence, there is more pressure than ever on retailers and brands to reassure responsible consumers their products are made using raw materials from reliable sources. ... read more


The 24 April ritual – Rana Plaza’s unfinished legacy

24 April 2018 | Guest author

Every year on 24 April, I browse through a poignant online memorial for garment workers who died in 2013 in the Rana Plaza building collapse in Bangladesh. The website is a collection of national IDs, passport-size and other photos—a man posing with a phone, a woman against a backdrop of flowers, and appointment letters of workers. It's a strong reminder of the human cost of negligence in the garment sector.... read more


Eco-fashion: Green is the new black

4 April 2018 | Guest author

With ethical consumerism on the rise, manufacturers and brands unable to meet 'green is the new black' expectations risk damaging their reputations. Weaving transparency throughout the end-to-end process is a proven path to a sustainable future.... read more


Four ways to ensure sustainable fashion is here to stay

16 February 2018 | Guest author

With London Fashion Week kicking off today, how can the fashion industry make sure that sustainable fashion is always in season rather than a passing fad?... read more


Gaps remain in India's move towards sustainability

12 February 2018 | Guest author

India's textile and garment industry is making strides in ensuring ethical compliance and environmental standards in its factories. Yet gaps still exist, and filling these will be key if it is to reach its full potential, cement long-term relationships with brands, and compete more effectively in Asia.... read more


Why it's time for retail to focus on transparency

1 February 2018 | Guest author

The responsible sourcing tactics popular in food and drug industries are permeating into other areas of retail, including fashion and apparel, leading to a more granular form of traceability throughout the supply chain.... read more


Tackling sexual harassment in the garment industry

8 December 2017 | Guest author

High-profile cases involving Hollywood, the media and political figures have exposed a global crisis of workplace sexual harassment. And garment workers are among the most vulnerable, says Aruna Kashyap, a lawyer who works for Human Rights Watch.... read more


Why cotton is key to sustainability

7 December 2017 | Guest author

Attitudes to, and awareness of, ethical trading are evolving fast – with 53% of the UK population choosing to avoid buying products or services over concerns about ethical reputation. As a result, the value of all ethical spending in the UK grew to GBP38bn (US$51.19bn) in 2015.... read more


What is driving transparency in the retail supply chain?

5 December 2017 | Guest author

Supply chain transparency is an urgent issue facing retail organisations today – it’s often deep down in the supply chain where the most significant brand, reputation and financial risks live.  ... read more


Millennials and Gen Z shaking up the cotton industry

6 November 2017 | Guest author

Changing interests and preferences among younger consumers are placing new demands on the cotton industry. As Millennials and Gen Z become avid consumers, cotton manufacturers will need to heed the demands of this large and influential group of consumers in order to stay successful.... read more


Start preparing for the rise of the conscious consumer

23 October 2017 | Guest author

Consumers are starting to demand more responsibility and transparency from retailers and brands about how and where their products are made. But instead of pointing fingers, perhaps it's time that stakeholders stopped passing the blame and started working together towards improving production processes.... read more


Three ways to accelerate innovation in sustainable fashion

9 August 2017 | Guest author

Across the fashion industry, there is clear appetite for improved sustainability and positive change. Today, many hope to see the creation of a circular economy, through which old clothes and materials are recycled, recovered or regenerated instead of being thrown away. Industry leaders also want to see a reduction in the environmental impact caused by the manufacturing process.... read more


'Who Made My Clothes?' will redefine fashion supply chains

15 May 2017 | Guest author

24 April marked the anniversary of the horrific collapse of the Rana Plaza garment factory complex in Dhaka, Bangladesh. In the years since, the incident has sparked a worldwide movement called Fashion Revolution, whose mission is to unite people and organisations to work together towards radically changing the way clothes are sourced, produced and consumed.... read more


Bangladesh Accord – New phase should protect unions

11 May 2017 | Guest author

Apparel companies involved in a widely hailed effort to protect garment workers in Bangladesh factories from harm need to take another step to make sure the gains are sustainable. Making that happen depends in large part on workers' ability to organise and to call out dangerous conditions without fear of being beaten or fired, says Aruna Kashyap, senior counsel for the women's rights division of Human Rights Watch. ... read more


Fusing ethics and finance to boost the bottom line

18 November 2016 | Guest author

Ethical performance and supply chain finance are an unlikely partnership – but fusing the two can be a winning combination for the fashion and apparel industry.... read more


Is NGO scrutiny reducing supply chain transparency?

11 October 2016 | Guest author

NGOs play a vital role in regulating and holding brands and retailers to account, especially when it comes to the transparency of their supply chains – but are their radars locked onto the wrong targets?... read more


Why traceability plays a key role in social compliance

1 September 2016 | Guest author

With traceability playing a key role in addressing the rising importance of social compliance, it might be time to review your traceability strategies and confirm you're armed with comprehensive product information across your supply network, says Thomas Ng, managing director, supply chain solutions, Amber Road.... read more


What does supply chain mapping really mean?

26 August 2016 | Guest author

The recent pledge by British prime minister Theresa May to invest a further GBP33m in fighting modern slavery, coupled with the importance of companies knowing what is happening in their supply chains, has led to an increased focus on supply chain mapping. But while there are many tools on the market offering such solutions, there is a lot of variation and confusion over what this actually means, according to Hannah Harris, product marketing manager at Historic Futures.... read more


US forced labour ban requires apparel supply chain scrutiny

7 July 2016 | Guest author

Renewed interest in a US law banning the entry of imported goods made with forced or indentured labour requires manufacturers, US importers, brands and retailers to scrutinise their supply chains, writes Brenda A Jacobs of Sidley Austin LLP, a Washington DC based international trade lawyer and licensed customs broker.... read more


How data and transparency can encourage better buying

8 June 2016 | Guest author

A new Better Buying initiative is being planned to eliminate the barriers to code of conduct compliance caused by apparel buyers' purchasing practices. Here the scheme's co-founder Dr Marsha Dickson explains why data and transparency will  inform buyers about the challenges they are placing on suppliers – and enable them to track improvements over time.... read more


Sustainability – the next use case for RFID?

17 May 2016 | Guest author

As well as the business benefits of adopting radio frequency identification (RFID), there's wide scope to apply it across various parts of the supply chain too. So it may come as no surprise then that sustainability is emerging as the next use case for the technology, explains Jacky Broomhead, market development manager for apparel at supply chain standards organisation GS1 UK.... read more


How software contributes to cleaner supply chains

6 May 2016 | Guest author

Implementing new technology and software solutions is the key to improving quality, compliance and oversight throughout the supply network. Peter Needle, CEO and co-founder of supply chain visibility software company Segura, explains.... read more


How mobile technology can improve cotton sustainability

20 April 2016 | Guest author

A key fibre in the global textile and apparel industry, cotton production is under threat from factors such as climate change, competition from new crops, and the migration of workers to more lucrative jobs. But a new social network has found that implementing SMS technology at the farmer level helps improve farming practices as well as engaging young people in agriculture – as Amy Barthorpe, head of business development at WeFarm, explains.... read more


Reputational risks concealed in supply chains

23 February 2016 | Guest author

With an ever-increasing slice of a company's value linked to its reputation, most brands and retailers require a new set of disciplines and procedures to really understand what is going on in their global supply chains. Tim Wilson, co-founder and director of value chain mapping firm Historic Futures, explains.... read more


Bright outlook for Haiti's apparel industry in 2016

17 February 2016 | Guest author

The prospects look bright for Haiti's apparel industry in 2016 after a number of important milestones were reached last year, says Mark D'Sa, senior advisor for industrial development in Haiti at the US Department of State.... read more


Act vs Action – Legislation not enough to combat modern slavery

18 December 2015 | Guest author

Leslie Johnston, executive director of the C&A Foundation and a board director at GoodWeave believes the UK's Modern Slavery Act – which obligates large companies to report and declare their steps to address slavery – can only do so much. She is instead calling on businesses to take a broader approach to abolish slavery within supply chains and engage consumers to create change.... read more


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