Whether the raw materials are farmed or extracted, textile production depends on natural resources – and these are limited.
Textile production also has socio–economic impacts on the people and communities where they are sourced and processed. To be truly sustainable, the textile industry needs to move to a circular model that rebuilds the earth’s natural capital and recognises how all these things are connected.
Materials have the biggest impact
When we look at our products across their entire lifecycle, up to 85% of the impact comes from what they’re made of, so materials are an important part of our sustainability strategy.
We’re working to use more and more fabrics that are recycled or sustainably produced, and reducing our use of resource–heavy materials like conventional cotton and virgin polyester.
We’ve made a list of our preferred fibres and materials and ranked them in order of priority. ‘It’s a fluid list,’ says Manu. ‘It changes as global trends and organisational priorities change, and as our business evolves. By diversifying into a portfolio of preferred fibres and materials, we minimise our risk and align our materials strategy to global trends.