The complexity of building a holistically circular model for the fashion industry is urging the stakeholders of the value chain as well as the consumers to consider extraordinary measures that link business, consumption to impact and evaluation. Tenacity to make sustainability a business norm can be achieved as truths around myths are revealed, responsibility becomes the winning criteria linked with profits, consumers are informed about the fact that their purchasing decision matters and if we work in collaboration.
The brands need to take #whomademyclothes as a part of their brand asset and to partner with their supply chain to expose a full life cycle product and process responsibility. The manufacturers are key to design systems' resilience and the pandemic has revealed the many ugly truths that led to the realization of greenwashing, racism, colonial practices.
Orsola de Castro of Fashion Revolution, a global campaign with participation in over 100 countries around the world says “Suddenly, some really ugly realities have become glaringly obvious. That we put profits over people, always, as default. That we can tolerate millions of supply chain workers going unpaid and losing their jobs, while a handful of individuals make billions they will never, ever need. That systemic racism is another pandemic we never took steps to eradicate. That colonialism is still embedded in supply chains. That we are so dependent on buying stuff that entire economies collapse if we stop. That all of this cheap stuff, mass-produced and left unsold, will decompose in landfill or be incinerated.”
The consumers see a single tag on their clothes and most of the time the “Made In” tag only indicates the country where the clothes might have been assembled without telling the details of where and how the raw materials were farmed, produced, the making of the fabric details, the dyeing process as well as the mill and the factory working conditions. To inquire is to know and act upon information.
Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) is an environmental policy approach in which a producer’s responsibility for a product is extended to the post-consumer stage of a product’s life- cycle. This approach can inspire the value chain to consider the post-consumer product ownership and invest in the product details in reference.
After many hours of working diligently and research across multiple industries, Soorty communication team has launched a Sustainability Dictionary. It ended up being a very comprehensive tool, giving references to responsibility from denim industry to other industries, from UN's SDGs to simple things in life each of us can adopt to be a better person and it is accessible on Future Possibilities: https://www.future-possibilities.com/sustainability-dictionary.
The platform is developing an engagement across the value chain and co-creating dialogues between collaborators and consumers and offering an extended responsibility approach as a vertical denim and jeans manufacturer.
After all it matters who makes your clothes.