Asos, H&M, Nike pledge to use 100% sustainable cotton by 2025
Attended by the Prince of Wales and organised by his International Sustainability Unit together with the Soil Association, the meeting saw leading retail brands sign up to the Sustainable Cotton Communique, which aims to promote the production of sustainable cotton in a bid to reduce the industry’s environmental impact.
“The Soil Association warmly welcomes the commitment of these companies to move to 100% sourcing of sustainable cotton by 2025,” said Peter Melchett, Soil Association policy director.
“Switching to organic cotton supports a way of farming that directly benefits both the local and global environment. Organic cotton farming has been proven to significantly reduce greenhouse gas emissions and water use and virtually eliminates the use of pesticides. Organic cotton farmers grow a variety of crops to minimise pests and diseases and to maintain healthy soils, which means farmers have the additional benefit of a more secure livelihood, and secure access to food.”
Together, the thirteen companies from the Sustainable Cotton Communique use more than 300,000 tonnes of cotton every year. But while over 3 million tonnes of more sustainable cotton were produced last year, companies sourced less than a fifth of this.
A Life Cycle Assessment (LCA), covering global organic cotton production has found that organic cotton produces 46% less CO2 per tonne of cotton fibre than non-organic cotton and that the process results in a 91% reduction in water consumption.
The FAO has also estimated that moving to producing sustainable cotton will help change the lives of nearly 100 million rural families for the better.
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