Image via Ali Mitton
Having been an avid supporter of sustainability since I started uni and became aware of the issues surrounding the fashion industry (see my other posts here and here), I have been super happy to see it as growing in importance in the minds of customers and producers, including designers and high street brands. We have seen many businesses begin to produce with sustainable methods (I went crazy for the Adidas Dry Dye development) and H&M recently publicised it's intentions "to sell more budget clothes and a drive to improve the environment and working conditions at its suppliers", which seems a little strange to me, but none the less, baby steps. That article also provides some reassuring figures about customer attitudes changing, and sustainability becoming more important.
However, it does concern me that in the press, it is often, if not always referred to as a 'trend' - simply because it being a 'trend' implies that it will go away / become less important / people will stop caring. Despite these figures and despite people saying that they are going to buy more sustainable goods, what customers say and what they actually do are completely different things.
It also concerns me that even in companies that claim to be sustainable, there is very little transparency in their supply chains. Many sites have whole pages dedicated to CSR (corporate responsibility) but they never actually say much / what is actually being done to make said business sustainable. This has admittedly become better over time, and even sites like Zara and ASOS demonstrate good CSR pages which show actual (if not a little vague) figures and examples.
Either way, I guess it's good to embrace the trend as it is growing, and those in the fashion industry who are aware and able to inform others should do all they can do in order to maintain it's presence in people's minds.
If you get a minute, there are some good petitions you can sign on the Green Peace website. Also, take a look at change.org and sign some of theirs, too! It all makes a difference, even if it is simply to make people aware, or make businesses and politicians answer for the things that they do.