QUALITY WEAR FOR THE NEXT ERA
Kings of Sustainability:
The ultimate goal is to be the number one sustainable jeans brand in the world! We produce quality products that to last long; durable pieces. We stimulate people to be selective in what they buy and to wear their clothing for more than just a season or two. To help customers enjoy their clothing longer, we have introduced a Triple-R philosophy (Recycle, Repair, Reuse). With DIY video’s and imagery, we hope to inspire people to mend and modify their old jeans and not throw them away.
Offering quality clothing is key, but we have to look ahead. We produce quality wear for the next era, which means finding new, more sustainable ways to produce is our top priority. We try to take a leading role in this, inspiring other brands to follow us when it comes to sustainable production. This is why we are 100% transparent about every step of the production chain. Customers and other denim manufacturers can easily read where we buy our fabrics, stitch our garments and wash our jeans. We reveal all suppliers here so one can see exactly what road our garments have travelled. Not that it’s a very long road, we produce as close to home as possible so our garments can be sent by truck. Tough we don’t yet compensate these truck rides, we do compensate CO2 on our flights when visiting production partners. We own one company car; a Mitsubishi Outlander Hybrid.
In 2018 we will publish a sustainability report that is 100% transparent on our production chain, our challenges, our growth in the sustainability field, as well as our carbon footprint.
Fair working conditions
We ensure fair and safe conditions for all people that work in the production chain. We are a proud member of the Fair Wear Foundation and BSCI.
In 2017 factory audits by FWF are done in our main stitching locations in Tunisia.
The purpose of factory audits is to determine the degree to which factories comply with the labour standards. For any non-compliance with the FWF Code of Labour Practices, the auditor recommends steps for improvement, which are discussed with the management of the factory. The requirements and recommendations of the audit team are the basis for a corrective action plan (CAP) that should contain realistic, effective and measurable plans for improvement, with a clear timeframe.
WEP trainings (Worker Education program) took place in 2017 at 80% of our production facilities:
- Nice One: Denim stitching location in Tunisia. 12% of the workers, 70% of management trained
- Cavalier: Denim stitching location in Tunisia. 15% of the workers, 60% of management trained
- Interwashing: Laundry location in Tunisia. 10% of workers, 70% of management trained
- Collage: Apparel stitching location in FYROM. 15% of workers, 100% of management trained
- Asteri: Apparel stitching location FYROM. 15% of workers, 69% of management trained
- WINGS: Apparel stitching location in Bulgaria. 100% of workers, 100% of management trained.
WEP trainings are given by the local FWF team and are created to make workers aware of the Fair Wear Foundation, its meaning and their rights. At least 10% of the workers need to be present at these trainings to be sufficient. Even though we meet this requirement, there is always room for improvement.
We visit our production locations on a regular base. We are cooperating and working together with our factories to get the best product and to build and invest in our relationships.
Future goals and challenges (5yrs):
100% of production (stitching and laundry) locations should be audited by FWF. A production chain is quite wide and complex, it’s a challenge to get all steps in order but this is a process. ‘Issues’ and matters will be discussed on site and an action plan will be created together with the factory;
WEP training in 100% of our production locations to create FWF awareness and knowledge of the rights that workers have.
Our products are made from materials consisting of (at least) 90% sustainable fibres such as organic cotton, recycled cotton, recycled wool, organic wool, TENCEL®, MODAL ®,hemp and linen. These quality sustainable materials we get from the best mills; TRC, Orta, Calik, Royo, Isko, Textile Santanderina, Unitin, Hempfortex, Northern Linen, Filatures du parc, Morgado, Vilharinho, Kimtex and Hellas Cotton. TENCEL ® and MODAL® fibres are coming through Lenzing.
We aim for 100% sustainable fabrics within three years, but for now we still need to use a bit of lycra (max 2%) for stretch and polyester for recovery and strength (max 10%).
The washing of the jeans is critical when it comes to a sustainable approach. Buying unwashed denim (the purest!) and washing them as little as possible is the most sustainable option!
But we are at the forefront of innovation when it comes to sustainable finishes. We use more and more laser and ice blast for abrasion, ozone for a washed effect and eco chemicals instead of chemical sprays.
Water waste is huge in denim production, therefore all water in our laundries is intensively cleaned and where possible recycled. Together with our laundries we are working towards a 90% recycling of water used for washing.
Tags & packaging
All paper tags and packaging are made from recycled paper. The poly bags we deliver our garments in are 100% recyclable. We use recycled boxes for shipping our bulk goods to and from our warehouse. All packaging we receive is either re-used for shipping out or is being recycled.
In 2018, we will change our web shop packaging from boxes (200 grams) to recycled paper envelopes (90 grams) saving 65% paper and CO2 for shipping.
Improving our ways is a constant process, there is always room for growth. More and more we understand that we need to report on every improvement made, so people know exactly where we stand and what they can expect from us as a brand. For instance, have a policy to minimize waste of products and packaging, but this is not being reported in the annual report.
We repair and recycle garments, but it is not being measured per year. We use recycled materials for packaging and we do recycle waste, but this is not being exactly measured and reported. Tough we definitely see how all of this would be good, we have to realistically research how to manage this within our small organization.