More and more clothing brands are becoming conscious when it comes to the sustainability of their fabrics and who is behind the scenes making their clothes. It’s amazing to see so many businesses putting these factors at the forefront of their business models and missions.
However, with the rising popularity and demand for more “conscious” brands, there’s always going to be some who will leap at the chance to take advantage.
While it’s a wonderful thing to build a sustainable and ethical business, you need to be vigilant and take the utmost care when making decisions regarding your supply chain.
If you want your brand to be truly ethical you need to ensure you’re working smart. Whether you’re dealing with suppliers, manufacturers or even photographers, you need to be aware that not everyone has the same values as you.
This article explains which factors you need to keep in mind when creating an ethical supply chain, what to be wary of, and how you can start your ethical company today!
What is an Ethical Supply
Chain and Why is it So
In the simplest of terms, a company with an ethical supply chain puts corporate social responsibility at the forefront of the business model, ensuring that all production and services treat the environment and workers humanely and ethically.
So, we’re essentially talking about two separate elements here which are both highly critical: the damage we are doing to our environment as a result of fast fashion and the atrocities workers in the fast fashion world undergo while creating garments.
Fast fashion accounts for a considerable amount of the Earth’s waste. It accounts for 92 million tonnes a year, and 10% of the world’s carbon emissions, to be more precise.The impact this is having on our beautiful planet and the animals and humans on it is plain to see. We simply cannot go on this way if we are to have any sort of livable environment to live on in the coming years.
You’ve probably heard of sweatshops and are aware of the fact that garment workers in underdeveloped countries are paid far less than is ethical. However, there’s a lot more going on behind the surface. Firstly, garment workers are paid pittance all across the globe, and yes, this includes the US, the UK and other developed Western countries. As well as their inhumane pay, garment workers are also often mistreated, underage, abused, and put in severely dangerous working conditions. We only need to take a look at what happened at the Rana Plaza to see this for ourselves.
This said, if you have a brand, it goes without saying that you don’t want to be linked to any of these atrocities. To combat this, it’s essential to build an ethical supply chain, to make sure your carbon footprint is minuscule on the environment, and that you aren’t harming any people in the making of your products.
if something seems too good
to be true, it probably is
It’s easy to say that you want an ethical brand, but another thing to actually achieve this. There is just so much to think about: fabric suppliers, manufacturers, workers, packaging and so on…
It's vital that, if you're working with people who claim to be ethical, you don't take them at face value. Ask for the relevant certification to ensure that they are really compliant. Go to the factories yourself once in a while to check that everything is in order and that the workers are treated fairly and humanely.
In addition to this, always keep in the back of your mind the saying: "if something seems too good to be true, it probably is."
If you have an offer from a supplier, for example, which seems incredibly cheap, this is a red flag. No truly ethical or sustainable factory would be able to product fabrics for barely any income, unless of course, the fabrics aren't actually sustainable and the people producing them aren't being treated or paid fairly.
It goes without saying, that there is more of an investment needed when creating an ethical supply chain, but see this as validation that everyone across the chain is being treated fairly, as they should.
Is there a service which can
make my brand100% ethical and sustainable for me?
Luckily, at Masala Threads, helping brands create their dreams of truly ethical sustainable supply chains is exactly what we do!
We offer a range of services, of which you can choose any or all, to ensure that you own a business you’re proud of.
Our services include: