Want a net positive fashion industry? Fair wages and circularity are needed, says the Global Fashion Agenda

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The fashion industry needs to be more ambitious or risk doubling its carbon targets, warns the Global Fashion Agenda (GFA) in its latest report.

The GFA Monitor report, launched ahead of Copenhagen’s biggest event in the sustainability industry this week, the Global Fashion Summit, warns that fashion must accelerate its response to climate change in less than eight years to align with the UN’s 1.5 ° C. Are you ready to get there? Fair wages throughout the supply chain and greater attention to circularity.

The report encourages industry to accelerate action on all five priorities: it notes that progress has already been made in resource management, a secure work environment and material selection, but activities related to payroll and circular systems are lagging behind.

“Solutions and tools that the fashion industry needs to improve already exist. It is time to use them ambitiously, “said GFA Director General Federica Marchionni. “With such a wealth of information circulating about sustainability, it can be a challenge for leaders to identify which actions will lead them on the path to progress. Through this report, our goal is to create a harmonized resource for the industry. ”

As for securing better wages throughout the supply chain, 58 percent of brands say the company’s customers are trained on the cost of production models, according to the report. In terms of circularity, 92 percent of brands are taking steps to improve energy and fuel use; and two-thirds of brands involve multi-stakeholder organizations to accelerate the adoption and development of sustainable materials. However, just over a third of brands say they are already working with stakeholders on how to extend product life, and only 14 percent of brands say most products are made from recyclable materials where their products are sold.

Experts have long been looking for a way to standardize efforts for fashion sustainability, especially where it helps in collaboration among the competition. In an effort to achieve this, this week’s annual GFA summit welcomes brand leaders, and in March partnered with the UN Secretariat for Climate Change, whose UN Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action brought together more than 100 companies, including luxury competitors LVMH and Kering, under ambitious climate goals.

GFA Monitor itself counts the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, Textile Exchange and Apparel Impact Institute as collaborators, with additional data from over 200 brands and vendors used in impact measures developed by the Higg Sustainability Insight Platform. It will be updated annually in an attempt to hold the industry accountable for sustainability action.

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