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Commitment

The third pillar of our Theory of Change is Commitment, where we work on two key areas:

  1. Strategy Consultancy:
    MADE-BY empowers and supports brands in developing comprehensive sustainability strategies that fit with their business. These range from strategy workshops to CSR governance, stakeholder engagement and strategy implementation and reporting.
  2. Scale:
    MADE-BY also supports operational publicly funded projects and partnerships that create awareness on the high street and in the industry or in specific markets that target impact at scale. These are projects such as the UK’s Sustainable Clothing Action Plan (SCAP), the European Clothing Action Plan (ECAP) and SWITCH Asia’s SMART Myanmar initiative.

Through this pillar, we engage both brands and governments to instil real industry change.

1. Strategy Consultancy
MADE-BY had the privilege of working with several international companies developing and implementing their sustainability strategy. By supporting brands in this key area, MADE-BY was able to help brands and retailers align sustainability with their overall business goals, missions and values. We developed comprehensive, short and long term strategies, designed to keep the brand and retailer committed to achieving their sustainability goals.

Fast Retailing

In 2016, MADE-BY worked with Fast Retailing, owner of seven main apparel brands, namely UNIQLO, GU, Theory, Helmut Lang, Comptoir des Cotonniers, Princesse tam.tam and J Brand, on developing a tailored and comprehensive sustainability approach for the Group. The project started with an internal and external sustainability assessment followed by the interactive development of a Group Sustainability Framework and underlying Policies.

These policies outline Fast Retailing’s sustainability commitments and focus on activities around four priority areas: Responsible Supply Chain Management, Responsible Products, Responsible Stores and Stronger Communities and Responsibility towards Employees. The four pillars incorporate both environmental and social considerations as well as cutting-edge innovations, and help Fast Retailing to stay focused on sustainable and transparent growth.

Besides providing strategic and content expertise in this project, we also engaged with senior management and representatives of the different corporate functions to develop mind-sets and build capacities for sustainability.

Furthermore, we supported the corporate teams through facilitated workshops with developing sustainability roadmaps and implementation plans. The next steps for Fast Retailing are the roll-out and implementation of the sustainability framework to the seven brands under the Group.

2. Scale through key publicly funded initiatives:

The Sustainable Clothing Action Plan (SCAP):

Background image: Vivian Chen

In 2016, MADE-BY continued to provide support to brands and retailers through the Sustainable Clothing Action Plan (SCAP). SCAP signatories account for over 50% of the UK retail market (by sales value) and include brands such as Marks & Spencer, Next, Sainsbury’s and ASOS. The signatories are making great progress towards the 2020 targets. For 2015, WRAP reported that brands, retailers and organisations from across the clothing supply chain have reduced water impacts by 12.5% against an overall target of 15% by 2020. Similarly, progress towards carbon impact reduction was at 3.5% against a target of 15% by 2020.

Throughout ASOS’ membership of SCAP, MADE-BY have supported us to extensively analyse our fibre mix, identifying areas of ‘easy-wins’ and the biggest opportunities. MADE-BY have delivered fibre workshops to our teams and have assisted in the implementation of sustainable fibres throughout the ASOS brand.”
Dani Baker, Sustainability Associate, ASOS

To support the signatories to SCAP on their journey, we provided extensive data analysis, delivered multiple training sessions on more sustainable fibres, developed bespoke materials and tools and continued to support WRAP in the development of the online tool.

More information about the SCAP 2020 Commitment: wrap.org.uk/content/scap-2020-commitment

The European Clothing Action Plan (ECAP):

Background image: bm.iphone

ECAP is a €3.6 million EU LIFE funded project that aims to reduce the environmental impact of the European clothing industry across all stages of the product life cycle, through a multi-stakeholder approach. In partnership with WRAP, Rijkswaterstaat, the Danish Fashion Institute and the London Waste and Recycling Board, we aim to achieve the following ambitious targets by spring 2019 (baseline 2015):

  • Divert 90,000 tonnes per year of clothing waste from landfill and incineration
  • Save 1.6 million tonnes of CO2e
  • Make 588 million metres3 of water savings
At Primark we are committed to reducing the impact that we have on the environment, and as part of that commitment we have signed up to the European Clothing Action Plan (ECAP). We look forward to working with ECAP and achieving our environmental sustainability goals.”
Katharine Stewart, Director of Ethical Trade, Primark

Through ECAP, MADE-BY will work with a total of 50 European fashion brands and retailers to support the development and implementation of bespoke sustainable fibre strategies. Participating brands and retailers benefit from subsidised support to understand the current environmental impact of their fibre mix and to develop a strategy to reduce this impact, through the selection of more sustainable alternatives.

In 2016, Bobo Choses, Bonobo Jeans, OVS, Peak Performance, Primark, Star Sock and zLabels all became participants in the programme and MADE-BY continues to sign up new brands and retailers.

We expect the ECAP project to be highly beneficial for us. It gives us the opportunity to work in collaboration with professional partners such as MADE-BY as well as likeminded brands and, furthermore, has the potential to propel our product sustainability to the next level.”
Åsa Andersson, CR & Quality Manager, Peak Performance

In 2017, MADE-BY will also start to engage with apparel manufacturers supplying the European clothing industry to help reduce the environmental impacts of their production processes as part of ECAP. A key output from the programme will be the dissemination of best practice case studies and innovative solutions across the industry to enable sector wide uptake and transformation.

Our world is facing big challenges related to the fashion industry. We all need fashion to be future-proof. This means embracing a new sourcing and manufacturing paradigm where sustainability becomes the key driver for product innovation. Our participation in ECAP helps us to evaluate alternative raw materials to reduce our environmental footprint.”
Simone Colombo, Head of Corporate Sustainability, OVS S.p.A.

Find out more about ECAP here: http://www.made-by.org/projects/ecap/ & http://www.ecap.eu.com/

SMART Myanmar:

Background image: ILO in Asia and the Pacific

SMART Myanmar is a €2.8 million EU project funded under the SWITCH Asia programme which seeks to improve the social and environmental conditions within Myanmar’s garment industry. The project is led by the German development organisation sequa, with the support of implementation partners MADE-BY, the Myanmar Garment Manufacturers Association (MGMA), the Association of Development Financing Institutions in Asia and the Pacific (ADFIAP) and the Foreign Trade Association of German Retail Trade (AVE).

The focus of our contribution in 2016 was to raise awareness with the Myanmar government for sustainable purchasing practices of textile products and to conduct an assessment on the current sustainable public procurement (SPP) setup in the country.

During an inter-ministerial dialogue on SPP in Nay Pyi Taw we brought together representatives of 15 Myanmar ministries to inform about SPP and discuss implementation challenges and solutions for SPP in Myanmar. This gathering was followed by a public-private dialogue in Yangon that saw participants from garment factories and ministries discussing possible SPP piloting approaches.

In addition, we also held two seminars for Myanmar garment factories, one on environmental initiatives and labels and another on sustainable wet processing in the denim sector. We also prepared a project scorecard to support the continuous progress tracking and reporting on individual and aggregated factory improvement activities.

In 2017, we will conduct a workshop for Myanmar garment factories on how to create comprehensive and credible supplier profiles and how to communicate sustainability progress in an effective way. Furthermore, we will hold a consumer lab in Amsterdam which will bring European apparel brands and consumers together to discuss expectations and ideas for sustainable garment production in Myanmar and how to enable more sustainable purchasing decisions.

More information about the SMART Myanmar initiative: smartmyanmar.org

Next: Looking Ahead