Fashion and textiles industry keen to go green despite COVID-19 pandemic
New research reveals the extent of the global fashion industry's commitment to sustainability, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, with sustainability ranked as the second most important strategic objective for businesses in the sector1.
This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201012005846/en/
(Graphic: Business Wire)
The new research, from the U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol and the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), is based on a survey of 150 leading executives from top fashion, retail and textile business across Europe and the U.S., and interviews with leading brands like Puma, H&M and Adidas. Explored in a new report, ‘Is Sustainability in Fashion?’ the research comes at a time when the industry finds itself at a crossroads: whether to continue to invest in sustainability, or row back in light of the pandemic.
Sustainability is business critical, say fashion, retail and textile leaders
In defiance of the pandemic, the new data shows that for many of the world's biggest brands, sustainability is now business critical. The majority of fashion, retail and textile leaders surveyed (60%), named implementing sustainability measures as a top two strategic objective for their business, second only to improving customers’ experience (ranked first by 64%). This contrasts starkly with the fewer than one in six (15%) that listed 'rewarding shareholders' as a top objective.
Leaders report they’re introducing sustainability measures throughout the supply chain, from sourcing sustainably produced raw materials (65%), introducing a circular economy approach to their business and cutting greenhouse gasses (51% apiece) and investing in new technologies like 3D printing and blockchain (41%). Overall, the majority (70%) were optimistic that sustainable, fast and affordable fashion is achievable.
A key finding of the research is that data matters for sustainability. When asked what measures they were implementing today to be more sustainable, collecting data from across the business and in the supply chain to measure performance was listed at the very top of business leaders’ list of priorities by 53%, second only to developing and implementing an environmental sustainability strategy with measurable targets, favoured by almost six in ten (58%).
And data is not important for the immediate term only – three in ten (28%) said the availability of reliable data holds the key to greater sustainability over the next decade, while almost three-quarters of industry leaders (73%) stated their support for global benchmarks and thresholds as an effective means of measuring sustainability performance and driving progress in the industry.
But data collection is patchy
However, although brands clearly recognize the importance of data, the research’s findings on data collection indicates that top fashion brands, retailers and textile businesses may find sourcing good quality data a challenge.
While business leaders report relatively high rates of data collection on supplier sustainability practices (65%) and worker rights and workplace health and safety in the supply chain (62%), a significant proportion (45%) of businesses do not track greenhouse gas emissions across production, manufacturing and distribution of the products they sell, while 41% don’t track the amount of water and energy being used to produce the raw materials they source.
Looking to the future, over a quarter (26%) of respondents saw a lack of available, easily-accessible data as hampering collaboration on sustainability across the industry. As some respondents in interview pointed out, while collecting data could be hard it is important.
Commenting on the findings, Gary Adams, President of the U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol, said: "It is clear that brands are faced with a challenge on driving forward their sustainability efforts. At the U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol we know that accurate, reliable data supports businesses in this work - providing not only the evidence to show hard work and progress, but the insight to drive further improvements. We provide one of the most robust data collection mechanisms available for an essential material – cotton – for unparalleled transparency.”
Partnership offers path to further progress
An additional key finding is that fashion, retail and textile business clearly cannot drive change in isolation: collaboration is needed. According to one respondent, from Reformation, this is already happening. “We’re energized to see collaboration and cooperation across the industry and believe that will only increase over time.”
However, when it comes to external support to help guide that progress, business leaders do not necessarily perceive further regulation as the answer. The UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and government regulation were each given equal weight in driving sustainability change, both cited by a quarter of respondents (24% apiece). Regulatory requirements were also ranked by only a third (33%) of the business leaders surveyed as being within the top three factors that will drive sustainability progress over the next decade.
Jonathan Birdwell, Regional Head of Public Policy and Thought Leadership, The Economist Intelligence Unit: “It’s clear from the survey results and our interviews with business leaders that the industry is committed to driving progress on its sustainability performance. We were particularly struck by the fact that sustainability is largely considered as pre-competitive – behind the scenes brands are sharing resources and lessons learned”.
The impact of Covid-19
This determination on sustainability flies in the face of COVID-19 uncertainty, although when asked their view on the pandemic, just over half (54%) of respondents said they thought it would make sustainability less of a priority within the industry.
The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol is a new initiative that sets a new standard in sustainably grown cotton. By working closely with growers, the U.S. Trust Protocol provides clear, consistent data on six key sustainability metrics, including GHG emissions, water use, soil carbon, soil loss, independently audited through Control Union Certification. For the first time, brands can access annualized farm level data and trace their cotton from field to 'laydown'.
Visit us online at:
Follow us at:
1 Research based on quantitative survey of 150 executives in the fashion, retail and textile industry based in Europe and the United States undertaken by the Economist Intelligence Unit between 9th July and 28th July 2020. The survey was complemented by qualitative insight from interviews with ten professionals in the fashion and sustainability space.
About the U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol
In a period of ever greater supply chain scrutiny and a growing demand for transparency, the U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol will set a standard for more sustainably grown cotton. It brings quantifiable and verifiable goals and measurement to the issue of responsibly-grown cotton production and drives continuous improvement in key sustainability metrics.
The Trust Protocol underpins and verifies U.S. cotton’s progress through sophisticated data collection and independent third-party verification. Choosing Trust Protocol cotton will give brands and retailers the critical assurances they need that the cotton fiber element of their supply chain is more sustainably grown with lower environmental and social risk. Brands and retailers will gain access to U.S. cotton with sustainability credentials proven via Field to Market, measured via the Fieldprint Calculator and verified with Control Union Certifications.
The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol is overseen by a multi-stakeholder Board of Directors comprised of representatives from brands and retailers, civil society and independent sustainability experts as well as the cotton-growing industry, including growers, ginners, merchants, wholesalers and cooperatives, mills and cottonseed handlers.
About the Economist Intelligence Unit
The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) is the research and analysis division of the Economist Group providing forecasting and advisory services through research and analysis, such as monthly country reports, five-year country economic forecasts, country risk service reports, and industry reports.
About Business Wire
Subscribe to releases from Business Wire
Subscribe to all the latest releases from Business Wire by registering your e-mail address below. You can unsubscribe at any time.
Latest releases from Business Wire
C3.ai, Microsoft, and Adobe Combine Forces to Re-invent CRM with AI26.10.2020 14:00:00 CET | Press release
C3.ai, Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ:MSFT), and Adobe Inc. (NASDAQ:ADBE) today announced the launch of https://cts.businesswire.com/ct/CT?id=smartlink&url=https%3A%2F%2Fc3.ai%2Fproducts%2Fc3-ai-crm%2F&esheet=52313416&newsitemid=20201026005552&lan=en-US&anchor=C3+AI%26%23174%3B+CRM&index=2&md5=07e2fd5feb7fe0669bcb9697cbace311 C3 AI® CRM powered by Microsoft Dynamics 365. The first enterprise-class, AI-first customer relationship management solution is purpose-built for industries, integrates with Adobe Experience Cloud, and drives customer-facing operations with predictive business insights. This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201026005552/en/ The partners have agreed to: Integrate Microsoft Dynamics 365, Adobe Experience Cloud (including Adobe Experience Platform), and C3.ai’s industry-specific data models, connectors, and AI models, in a joint go-to-market offering designed to provide an integrated suite of industry-sp
Rimini Street UK Earns Designation as Great Place to Work-Certified™ Company in 2020, Awarded Excellence in Wellbeing Recognition and Top 20 Ranking in 2020 Best Workplaces™ In Tech26.10.2020 14:00:00 CET | Press release
Rimini Street, Inc. (Nasdaq: RMNI), a global provider of enterprise software products and services, the leading third-party support provider for Oracle and SAP software products and a Salesforce partner, today announced that it has been recognized as a Great Place to Work-Certified™ Company in the UK and has also been awarded the “Excellence in Wellbeing” recognition and achieved a top 20 ranking in the 2020 Best Workplaces™ In Tech for medium sized companies. Being a caring, supportive employer is integral to Rimini Street’s culture and the Great Place to Work® Certification and Best Workplaces™ In Tech ranking highlights trust and engagement levels among employees showing they have a consistently positive experience at Rimini Street. The Excellence in Wellbeing recognition benchmarks employee wellbeing against the physical, psychological, social and financial aspects of working life. This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news
Audible Magic Sponsors MIDiA Research Report on The Rising Power of User-Generated Content26.10.2020 14:00:00 CET | Press release
User-generated content will contribute a significant proportion of the growth in music consumption over the next two years in an opportunity that is worth circa $6 billion to the music industry value chain. Rights holders could see $3.2 billion of this in the next two years, as a new report by MIDiA Research in partnership with Audible Magic, has found—with UGC already having contributed over one billion dollars to global music revenues in 2019. This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201026005198/en/ Music-related UGC is a fast-growing and under-commercialised sector with huge future potential. Potential UGC music-related revenues, 2018 – 2022, global (Graphic: Business Wire) ‘The Rising Power of UGC’ report, which is available to download for free here, examines the dramatic and continuing growth of UGC creation and consumption and highlights that this ongoing expansion requires the implementation of new, simpler li
Hologic Launches 3DQuorum™ Imaging Technology, Powered by Genius AI™, in Europe26.10.2020 13:00:00 CET | Press release
Hologic, Inc. (Nasdaq: HOLX) today announced the commercial availability in Europe of its 3DQuorum™ Imaging Technology, Powered by Genius AI™. The innovation was designed to help improve mammography efficiency and workflow, which is critical as clinics strive to manage the backlog of women whose routine breast screening was delayed due to the COVID-19 lockdown. This press release features multimedia. View the full release here: https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20201026005023/en/ 3DQuorum™ Imaging Technology, Powered by Genius AI™ (Graphic: Business Wire) The 3DQuorum technology uses Genius AI-powered analytics to reconstruct high-resolution 3D data to produce 6mm “SmartSlices.” These analytics identify clinically relevant regions of interest and preserve important features during reconstruction of the SmartSlices.1,2 SmartSlices expedite read time by reducing the number of images for radiologists to review, without compromising image quality, sensitivity or accuracy.1,2 With 3DQu
PerkinElmer Receives CE Mark for Multi-analyte Respiratory Panel Including COVID-1926.10.2020 13:00:00 CET | Press release
PerkinElmer, Inc. (NYSE: PKI) announced today that its PKamp™ Respiratory SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR Panel has received clearance to be marketed as an in vitro diagnostic (IVD) device in more than 30 countries by meeting the requirements of the European In Vitro Diagnostic Directive (IVDD). This test is currently under review by the U.S. FDA for Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). The multi-analyte panel enables labs to detect and differentiate between SARS-CoV-2, influenza A viruses, influenza B viruses and respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) in a single test, which will be critical to manage the surge in test demand during the flu season as the targeted pathogens have some similar signs and symptoms. Rather than running multiple tests on samples, the PKamp Respiratory SARS-CoV-2 RT-PCR Panel is designed to conserve resources by testing a single nasopharyngeal, oropharyngeal or nasal swab sample collected from individuals suspected of respiratory viral infection consistent with COVID-19, the flu
Western Union Expands Real-Time Payout26.10.2020 13:00:00 CET | Press release
Western Union (NYSE: WU), a global leader in cross-border, cross-currency money movement and payments, announced it has further expanded its global digital network for funds payout and increased the availability of real-time payouts, advancing the company’s goal of building the world’s largest funds collection and distribution network to meet the growing customer demand for transparency, immediacy, and reliability. For decades, Western Union has been moving money with payout in minutes in over 130 currencies through its vast global retail network of over 550,000 agent locations across more than 200 countries and territories. The company now also expanded its account-based payout options, including bank account, wallet, or card payout in over 120 countries (up from 100) with real-time payment speeds in 80 of these countries (up from 50 in April 2020).1 The capability is available for its customers and clients across its branded, co-branded partner, and white-label partner money transfer
In our pressroom you can read all our latest releases, find our press contacts, images, documents and other relevant information about us.Visit our pressroom