The TM Sustainable Fashion Day

30 April 2013

Photo: Rainer Sturm/

DÜSSELDORF. This year’s Sustainability Fashion Day, organized by the professional textile magazine TM, has taken place april 25 in Düsseldorf, Germany. The journal sees itself as a communication platform for industry, wholesalers and trade in textile and apparel industry. Aim of the event was to draw attention of trade and industry to the increasing number of questions concerning sustainability.

Several lectures presented successfully practical examples and panels to point out the different perspectives and concepts of fashion producers, NGOs and consultants concerning ecological,economic and social sustainability in textile and apparel industry. Approaches such as the "NBEO (New Business Engagement Option) for sustainable cotton" from Fairtrade International and the "Detox campaign from Greenpeace have been controversially discussed. 3p-president Willie Beuth, who participated as speaker and panelist, criticised the proceeding of the Greenpeace environmentalists as exaggerated. “It’s important not to lose reality. Companies need time to enlighten their supply chains and to find an appropriate solution”, Beuth said and added: “There are other fields of consumer goods industry which products include more hazardous substances than textiles. Here the limits are handled often too lax and more action would be welcome. Companies should learn to make increased use of their influence on producers and politics in the producing countries, controll their processes in the fabrics and to find preventive measures that allow intervention at an early stage. Easier said than done. Main problem of many approaches is the complex and often opaque textile supply chain, especially for big brands which often only know the first-tier supplier. Many attempts can not follows consequently and end up in “Greenwashing”. To conclude: All participants agreed that there is still no solution which meets all requirements and give satisfaction to all sides. But it is important to stay in contact.

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