H&M tackles environmental impact with organic hemp and ‘Better Cotton’ range
Green business news - by GreenWise staff
12th April 2012
H&M is using organic hemp for the first time in its clothing range and says all its cotton will be sourced from sustainable sources by 2020.
The move is part of the high street fashion giant’s ongoing sustainability
published its 2011 Conscious Actions Sustainability Report
today, which shows the company is now be the biggest user of organic cotton
in the world, sourcing 7.6 per cent of its entire cotton organically. It launched its first organic hemp
clothing collection last autumn and introduced its first denims made from its more sustainability sourced cotton, 'Better Cotton’, into its stores worldwide in 2011.
Organic hemp uses less water than cotton or linen, doesn’t need pesticides or fertilisers and can be grown almost anywhere. Meanwhile, studies by WWF have shown that H&M’s 'Better Cotton’ reduces pesticide use by 32–81 per cent, saved 32–49 per cent of water usage and increases the net profits of participating farmers by 15-20 per cent.
"We want our customers to feel confident that everything they buy from H&M is designed, manufactured, and handled with consideration for people and environment. The level of social and environmental responsibility we take, places H&M’s sustainability work at the forefront of the fashion industry globally", commented Karl-Johan Persson, ceo at H&M.
Today’s report also revealed that sales of H&M’s 'EU Flower’ eco-labelled garments increased by 26 per cent, the company saved 300 million litres of water in denim production in 2011 compared to 2010, and increased the number of shoes it makes with water-based adhesives instead of solvents to over two million last year compared to 2010. That figure is set to grow to seven million in 2012.
Elsewhere, carbon emissions were cut by five per cent relative to sales by cutting air transport, improving energy efficiency
in stores and offsetting, the company said.
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