Fashion’s move towards responsible fibre and a more sustainable future

Lenzing EcoVero fibre
Lenzing EcoVero fibre
Dec 02, 2021 By WGSN Insider

In the latest preview of our new white paper, Create Better, we look into the fashion industry and how it can be more sustainable via fibres. The fashion industry is shifting its focus from doing less harm to doing more good, whether it be through regeneratively farmed fibres or equitable partnerships with artisan communities. Durable and long-lasting designs, closed-loop and biodegradable packaging, and cross-industry collaborations are also lighting the way to a more sustainable future.

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Regenerative sourcing

Regenerative agriculture is set to be a game-changer for many industries, resulting in more responsible sourcing. Regenerative farming practices actively improve environmental conditions such as soil quality and biodiversity, reinvigorating soil so that it can actually sequester carbon.

For a fashion brand to move towards regenerative sourcing, everyone in the business needs to understand the agricultural practices used at the source of product development. That education process will empower the design and sourcing teams to prioritise regenerative natural materials.

Lenzing EcoVero fibre Margent Farm

Lenzing and Hong-Kong-based software firm TextileGenesis launched blockchain-enabled supply chain traceability/Margent Farm grows hemp using regenerative methods in Cambridgeshire, England

Business strategies

  • Collaborate with intentional sourcing programmes that encourage global fibre farming communities to re-evaluate and improve practices. Start incrementally by tackling the natural materials most commonly used in your collections. Your long-term goal should be to obtain all virgin natural fibres from these sources
  • Engage with the Regenerative Organic Alliance's ROC certification to work towards the criteria needed 

Track and trace

Track and trace technology will help rebuild trust and transparency in supply chains and provide assurance for people buying your product. Being able to track your fibre usage will be crucial to measure your business’s progress on carbon-based targets, and deliver an accountable strategy.

In the future, this may inform the level of a business’s tax rate, its access to preferential loan and insurance terms, and its ability to attract investors. Fibre track and trace schemes will enable customers and selling partners to filter their choices by more responsibly sourced products, and understand how to best dispose of them in circular recycling initiatives.

Lenzing EcoVero fibre
Lenzing EcoVero fibre

Business strategies

  • Analyse your biggest fibre usage, and act now to take part in pilot initiatives to track lower-impact fibres and textiles via third-party certifications
  • Challenge the lack of transparency in mainstream fibres such as upstream polyester by working with fibre tracers that can tag, test and track your products all the way from raw fibre to garment-making and post-consumer end of life

WGSN subscribers can see the full white paper, Create Better, here or catch up on our latest Food & Drink and Beauty insights.

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