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Opinion

It all starts from sustainable products

This week, Shahriare Mahmood outlines how sustainability informs the entire supply chain of the clothing business.

Sustainability encompasses different dimensions of social responsibility and how these can be nourished. Particularly in the clothing business, it has more significance as the industry is widespread and the supply chain is long and complex, with considerable impact on both humans and nature.

Responsible brands maintain social and environmental compliance as part of their supply chain operation. However, to be truly sustainable it is important to achieve the safety of the end product, as well as during its manufacture.

A product is considered safe if it is compliant physically and chemically. This is extremely important for children’s clothing. Children’s skin differs from that of adults, as it is less resistant physically and is more sensitive to chemicals. A chemically safe product ensures not only that it does not contain any harmful substances, but also that it has been produced without using chemicals and processes which are unsafe for humans and the environment.

Apart from being free from harmful substances, children’s clothing also demands more attention to ergonomic design to provide better physical safety and comfort. Functional clothing in particular is a great means of promoting activity regardless of the weather conditions through providing greater comfort. Children’s clothes should provide enhanced safety, which should be designed with great care by considering the international safety requirements for physical safety.

The materials used should also provide advanced protection from UV radiation, for instance.

Furthermore, sustainable yarns and materials are also produced with minimal impact on nature and people and should therefore be considered for making safer products.

High-quality durable materials give extended life to the products, allowing the products to be used by other kids. This culture of reusing clothes from child to child is important for reducing the impact on nature.

Another way to reduce the impact is with the PFC-free DWR treatment of weatherproof clothes, which results in the accumulation of less dirt. Furthermore, this enables users to clean specific areas of the garment, rather than washing the full product, which helps in reducing the environmental impact during consumer use.

Indeed, sustainability embraces the entire lifecycle of the product and a truly sustainable product is attainable once all aspects have been considered.

Published on 28.06.2018