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Business Leaders

“Inditex, the owners of the clothing brand ZARA, and the International Textile, Garments and trade union body (ITGLWF), with 217 affiliated unions worldwide, signed an International Framework Agreement, designed to reinforce worker rights, in October 2007. This agreement, with a particular focus on the rights of free trade unions to bargain collectively, means that the two organisations will collaborate to ensure that Inditex’s code of conduct improves workers’ conditions within Inditex’s supply chain.” Material Concerns report

Impactt and Traidcraft have issued a report entitled “Material Concerns: How responsible sourcing can deliver the goods for business and workers in the garment industry”, (October 2008), intended for sourcing and commercial directors with responsibility for the sourcing or buying functions within garment retailers or brands.

This report identifies a set of specific operational principles to establish better purchasing practices – at product development, sampling, supplier selection, placement of orders, production, and delivery stages.

The report suggests a two pronged approach to implementing a comprehensive and effective responsible sourcing strategy:

  1. Establish a clear set of operational principles which define the ground rules for purchasing relationships.
  2. Develop an enabling environment where buyers and suppliers are incentivised on performance against commercial and ethical trading targets.

The report includes case studies and role specific guidelines for buyers, designers, merchandisers, and technologists.



Resources on the ways in which fashion professionals can influence development and reduce environmental impact through their purchasing practices