Twelve Hong Kong textile and apparel companies founded the Sustainable Fashion Business Consortium to promote best practices throughout the garment supply chain.
The 12 members represent the whole production process, from design to dyeing, from spinning to manufacturing.
The consortium's initiatives include:
- instituting better employment practices and working conditions
- applying for Fair Trade labeling
- establishing carbon accounting standards for the industry, working toward carbon credit trading and a carbon footprint label for clothing
- better public reporting on Corporate Social Responsibility and sustainability
- increasing energy efficiency and reducing waste, such as recycling leftover fabric, which can be up to 20 percent of the total
The 12 members are Ace Style Group, Central Textiles, Clothing Industry Training Authority, Crystal Group, Fountain Set, Glorious Sun Group, Gunzetal, High Fashion International Management, I Limited, Lever Style, Sun Hing Industries and TAL Apparel. The Consortium was officially launched on Earth Day 2008, the 22nd of April.
Oxfam Hong Kong is in dialogue with the new consortium and the Clothing Industry Training Authority, a government-supported body which assisted with months of behind-the scenes work. Oxfam has also been facilitating several roundtable sessions for the past six months on CSR and ethical sourcing with Esprit, Giordano, Goldlion and Moiselle, four of Hong Kong's leading brand clothing companies. Best practice can reduce poverty, including the poverty caused by low wages, misguided natural resource management, and excessive carbon emissions.