Friday 20 March 2009

Ethical production spreading in Asia

With much of the globe's clothing production being concentrated in Asia it's good to see signs that many ethical and environmental values are being focussed on by many producers in Asia. And this, it seems, is a reaction to the general trend in the USA and Europe towards a more ethical outlook rather than as the direct result of Western companies intervening to force production. It's in anticipation of the market moving that way.

We particularly noted this trend in an AFP article "Eco Concerns Slowly Turning Asia's Textiles Green" which to note a few points:

  • At the Paris Texworld textile trade fair it was noted how in China, Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, South Korea and Taiwan the production of natural fibres and organic yarns under fair trade practices and clean processing had been subject to a sharp increase
  • Eco-Friendly is the buzz word - it apparently adds 15% to production costs but this is more and more seen to be a price worth paying
  • Companies are gearing up towards increased production of organic cotton and hemp
  • Even in China the message is hitting home
Producers accept the increased cost of eco-friendly production - but a worry is the additional cost of accreditation without which eco-friendly claims are viewed with submission.

Here at Pier 32, aside from the even more stringent organic certifications, it is the Oeko-Tex environmental standard you will find on much of the clothing we sell. Look out for it when ordering your next printed t-shirts.

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