Ethical shoppers – listen up! The Fashion Revolution, an organization that supports and encourages sustainable and ethical practices in the fashion industry, recently released its 2016 Fashion Transparency Index, which reveals that some of the most popular fashion brands aren’t nearly as transparent as they should be.
According to the report, big-name brands such as Chanel, Hermes, Prada, Forever 21, Fendi, and Michael Kors score low in transparency, which means that they’re making little effort in implementing responsible systems or being honest about their supply chain practices. On the opposite end of the spectrum, H&M, Inditex and Levi Strauss & Co. all scored high in transparency.
While evaluating the companies, The Fashion Revolution considered the following objectives: policy and commitment, tracking and traceability, audits and remediation, engagement and collaboration, and governance. The organization also notes in the report that it invited every company on its list to provide answers to various supply chain-related questions. However, many did not respond and much of the report was created using information that was available to the public.
Those who scored lowest on the transparency scale were deemed as having little to no information about their supply chain practices available to the public, and many of them have little more than a code of conduct in place. While those who scored high, appear to have systems in place for tracking, tracing, monitoring and improving labour and environmental practices.
While the data presented in the report is inherently interesting, especially to fashion nerds (yes, that’s a thing), it’s also extremely important. As the report so eloquently states: “It is impossible for companies to make sure human rights are respected and that environmental practices are sound without knowing where their products are made, who is making them and under what conditions. If you can’t see it, you don’t know it’s going on and you can’t fix it.”
Pushing brands to be more accountable and honest about their supply chains will only help create a more sustainable and ethical fashion industry. Plus, providing consumers with information on what brands support their beliefs will help facilitate a healthy industry for everybody.
To learn more and read the full report, visit www.fashionrevolution.org.