‘Supplier-focused network makes sustainability achievable’

The responsibility for fulfilling a company’s sustainability policy will always rest with the company itself—but a supplier-focused partnership network makes it much more achievable, according to Jeroen Douglas, executive director, Solidaridad Network.

«A supplier-focused approach helps ensure the industry’s efforts are grounded in reality, and takes account for the imbalance of power and influence in the sector. Importantly though, change has to be owned by suppliers with the support of influential parties, including brands and local authorities, rather than forced upon them by poorly crafted corporate sustainability policies or tick-box audits,» writes Douglas in an article in the hard bound fifth edition of the Sustainability Compendium – ‘Going Circular’ brought out by Fibre2Fashion.

«Suppliers need the whole-hearted participation of brands in a supplier-focused approach for it to work, but the truth is that big brands are the ones who need it much more,» Douglas adds in his article ‘From the bottom up’.

Netherlands-based Solidaridad Network works towards sustainable production of cotton, apparel and other commodities. Its mission is to bring together supply chain players and engage them with innovative solutions to improve production, ensuring the transition to a sustainable and inclusive economy that maximises the benefit for all.

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