Ecotextile Talks

MCL News and Media

Exclusive Podcasts that tackle the crucial environmental issues impacting today’s global textile and clothing supply chains. Put together by the team that launched the pioneering Ecotextile News magazine back in 2007, we take listeners behind the scenes to reveal how we break the news and also provide deep dive Newscasts on sustainability, ethics, policy, retail, pollution and the carbon crisis engulfing our planet. read less

Editor's Picks - Episode Two
Jul 5 2022
Editor's Picks - Episode Two
Welcome to the second episode of Editor’s picks. Each week the Editor of Ecotextile News will select a few key stories from the magazine that he thinks you need to hear, read out by AI voices. Then a human - Philip Berman - pieces it all together with music and voice-over, and a little magic turns it into a podcast for your aural delight!  This week we report on:  The Sustainable Apparel Coalition putting a global halt on the use of Higg MSI data on consumer-facing product labels following a legal decision in Norway (3.02) Calvin Klein and Tommy Hilfiger owner, PVH Corp, announced a new partnership with bankers HSBC which aims to provide supply chain facilities with the finance they need to reduce their environmental and social impact (8.10) Staying with supply chain news, a new open data platform for sectors including apparel, electronics and cosmetics has been launched in its beta phase today, in a bid to improve supply chain transparency (10.40) H&M and Bestseller were among the investors which helped agricultural innovator Materra raise US$4.5 million in seed funding to scale its climate-resistant cotton (14.04) The stories you can hear are just a sample of what's on offer with an Ecotextile News subscription, where you can read all of our exclusive stories and ideas on sustainability in the fashion and textile industry.   New subscribers can use our time-limited 15% off by inputting POD15 on this page: https://www.ecotextile.com/magazine-subscribe Hope you enjoy the podcast!
Unpicking the problem of organic cotton fraud
Jun 30 2022
Unpicking the problem of organic cotton fraud
In our latest Ecotextile Talks podcast, cotton expert Simon Ferrigno gives his own views to host Phil Berman on why he’d like to see a parliamentary-style inquiry into widespread fraud in the organic cotton sector.   Ferrigno also talks about his recent opinion piece on organic cotton fraud which was published as a special eight-page feature in the April/May 2022 edition of Ecotextile News magazine and later posted online here.    Ferrigno reveals how, since he wrote his article, even more whistleblowers have come forward – many of them unwilling to be quoted for fear of losing their jobs – to shed more light on what Ferrigno says is a long-running problem.   “This has been a running sore,” he says. “It’s a problem we’ve known about in the sector since the late 2000s, about 2008.   But we've started to have more whistle-blowers come forward saying this is a serious problem, the numbers don’t match, the big players know the numbers don’t match but they make far too much money to do anything about it, and the sector is riddled with fraud.”   Many of these whistleblowers work for organic certification bodies who claim the data they are being given by some industry bodies is erroneous and feel like they’re being made the ‘scapegoats’ as trust in data from India – where most organic cotton is grown – is falling.   Ferrigno suggests the problem is - that there is little incentive to report the right numbers because “they would fall dramatically and that means the profits in the sector would fall dramatically”.   Another issue, he says, is the lack of a regulatory body for the organic cotton sector; the nearest being the Indian export agency APEDA (Agricultural & Processed Food Products Export Development Agency) and the International Organic Accreditation Service – a private body that checks that certification bodies are doing what they’re supposed to do.   Ferrigno tells Berman that his key message would be for the organic sector to build a direct relationship with the authentic organic cotton farmers who he says are the main victims of fraud within the current system.   “My post-article thought is that we almost need a parliamentary inquiry type approach. That is a couple of legal minds and a sector specialist to put every single big player in the industry in front of them; all the people who’ve worked in this for years and ask them, how do things work? What's wrong with it? And what do we do?   “You almost need to completely tear up what people have been doing for the last 40 years and start afresh because the system no longer works. People will always try to defraud the system or seek an easy solution so you do need to prepare for those future battles. What we can’t do is keep doing the same thing and hoping that it’s going to turn out different the next time.”
What are the biggest ESG risks in fashion today?
May 31 2022
What are the biggest ESG risks in fashion today?
Randy Rankin, Eurofins Consumer Products Assurance Global Client Development Director for North America discusses the current key environmental, social, and governance risks facing the global textile and apparel industry. Rankin tells our host, Philip Berman, how he believes that new and proposed legislation on the fashion industry – on both sides of the Atlantic – are the key developments that should be concerning global brands right now. He cites the EU Corporate Sustainability Due Diligence Directive, as well as similar national moves in countries such as France and Germany, as key examples. These laws aim to make companies legally responsible for environmental and human rights issues in their global supply chains and to make it much easier for victims to seek legal redress. Rankin also talks about the proposed New York Fashion Act, which would require larger companies operating in New York to map out at least half of their supply chains, from raw materials to final product. And he mentions the Uyghur Forced Labour Prevention Act, which bans US imports of products, such as cotton, from the Xinjiang region of China unless proof can be provided that they were not the result of forced labour. Rankin says the trend towards legislation is a new development in the industry where concern over supply chain issues has been traditionally driven by reactions to major incidents, such as the Rana Plaza disaster. However, he feels increasing concern by both consumers and – crucially – investors are creating a new landscape where legislators are demanding more transparency from the industry's often opaque supply chains. If you want to contact Randy he can be reached on  +1 717 719 0287 (if you are outside the US) or emailing randyrankin@eurofinsus.com