Archive for October, 2010

Amsterdam to Host Sustainable Fashion Event

Next month, Amsterdam will be hosting the next event in a joint series of seminars put on by Made-By and Organic Exchange.

The seminar takes place on November 17th and 18th and will be focusing on issues surrounding the sustainable fashion industry.  Speakers include Cortney McDermott, head of sustainability at North Face, Robert Nuttall, communication strategist at Marks and Spencer, as well as sustainability strategists from Nike.

These notable speakers will touch on several important topics including;

  • Environmentally Friendly Fabrics
  • Responsible Processing
  • Product Integrity
  • Social Compliance
  • Setting Sustainability Strategies

This seminar is the perfect opportunity to assist textile and apparel professionals working in brands and retailers to come up to speed on changes and opportunities in the supply chain.

28/10/2010 at 4:30 am Leave a comment

China Cold Snap Raises Cotton Prices

Cotton prices soared to an all time high yesterday as cold snaps in both China and the U.S. put crops at risk.

Cold weather in China, which is the world’s biggest user of fibre, is expected to last through the next day, while hail storms throughout Texas have damaged the crop and delayed harvest.

Since early July, prices have risen 53%.  Last week alone prices jumped 9% and nearly 8% was added to the cost of a pound of cotton in the past two days, bringing it to the highest level since the fiber started trading 140 years ago.

27/10/2010 at 6:21 am Leave a comment

Genetically Modified Textile Debate

Some leading European retailers were caught out earlier this year when it was discovered that the certified organic cotton garments they were selling in-store were actually made from genetically modified (GM) cotton fibre.

As a result, issues surrounding the use of genetically modified technology within the clothing and textile industries have been laid out in a new document prepared by the RITE Group (Reducing the Impact of Textiles on the Environment.

This short, factual document was created to clarify and inform on the issue of GM textiles.  RITE intends to develop an objective, independant and authoritative position on GM textiles and how this type of biotechnology relates to the environmental impacts on the industry.

26/10/2010 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

180° South

180° South – Conquerors of the Useless follows Jeff Johnson as he retraces the epic 1968 journey of his heroes Yvon Chouinard and Doug Tompkins to Patagonia.  Chouinard is the founder of outdoor gear Patagonia, a passionate environmentalist and is a leader in the forefront of the sustainable textile movement.  Tompkins, the co-founder of North Face, along with his wife Kris are now committed to extraordinary conservation efforts in South America.

Throughout Johnson’s journey,  he gets shipwrecked off Easter Island, surfs the longest wave of his life – and prepares himself for a rare ascent of Cerro Corcovado.  Jeff’s life turns when he meets up in a rainy hut with Chouinard and Tompkins who, once driven purely by a love of climbing and surfing, now value above all the experience of raw nature – and have come to Patagonia to spend their fortunes to protect it.

Enjoy this inspirational, must-see documentary!

21/10/2010 at 6:45 am Leave a comment

Wal Mart – Jolly GREEN Giant?

Not long ago Wal-Mart announced their global commitment to sustainable agriculture in which they aimed to help small and medium sized farmers expand their businesses, get more income for their product and reduce the environmental impact of farming.  Wal-Mart pledged to make it’s Faded Glory brand  100% more sustainable.  Now, just a few months later, reports from India indicate that the retail giant may be cutting back on it’s use of organic cotton.

Anil Jain of Venus Garments stated, “We had a considerable good order for organic garments from Wal-Mart last year which is has not continued for this year.”  Although sizeable orders continue to come in from Wal-Mart, it’s Spring 2011 line is made up of a mixture of both conventional and organic cotton as opposed to 100% organic cotton.

According to one advisor at Ecotextile News, the most likely reason behind Wal-Marts decision to cut back on their sustainability commitments has something to do with the record high costs of cotton.  Five years ago, organic cotton was selling 20 – 25 cents per pound more than conventional cotton, whereas today organic cotton is 5 – 7 cents more per pound.

Some industry leaders have suggested that any cut backs by Wal-Mart may last only a short while until the prices return to reasonable rates.  Either way, downsizing of Wal-Marts organic cotton commitment will be a disappointing blow to Indian organic cotton farmers.

19/10/2010 at 10:13 am Leave a comment

China’s Proposes Eco Tax

Chinese ministries will be submitting a proposal for an eco tax on a trial basis. The tax will first be tested in four rural areas – Jiangxi, Gansu, Hubei and Hunan.  The proposed tax is part of Beijing’s incentive to create greener economic growth and would likely be levied on discharges of polluted water and emissions of carbon dioxide.

China has pledged to cut it’s carbon footprint by 40% by 2020.  These efforts are part of the governments commitment to meet environmental standards as well as to restructure it’s slowing industrial output.  Beijing has already taken steps to crack down on excessively polluting industries and they’ll continue to get tougher in the years to come.

Source – Ecotextile October 2010

14/10/2010 at 6:00 am Leave a comment

Sustainable Textile Talks In NYC

More than 300 representatives from around the world will be meeting in New York City in just under two weeks to attend the 2010 Organic Exchange Sustainable Textiles Conference.  Attendees include those who are involved in making key decisions on sustainable textiles.  Retailers, manufacturers, farmers, producers, certifiers, academics and NGO’s will learn about and discuss best practices, emerging issues and strategies to improve sustainability of textiles.

Guest speakers will include Yvon Chouinard – Chairman and Founder of PatagoniaEileen Fisher – designer and owner of fashion leader Eileen Fisher Inc.,  and Tensie Whelan – President of the Rainforest Alliance.

Workshop speakers include leading experts touching on the following subjects.

  • Environmental footprinting of textiles
  • Water conservation and management in the textile chain
  • Environmental issues in dyeing and finishing
  • Natural textiles, recycled textiles, bio‐based textiles
  • Ensuring product integrity claims

Organic Exchange is a U.S. membership‐based, non‐profit organization facilitating expansion of sustainable textiles by working closely with farmers and producers, leading brands and retailers, and their business partners, and manufacturers across the global textile value chain.

12/10/2010 at 10:13 am Leave a comment

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