- Huw Hughes |
Boohoo has announced it is launching an independent review of its UK supply chain following allegations of poor working conditions at its suppliers' factories in Leicester in the UK.
The company, which owns brands including Pretty Little Thing and Nasty Gal, said it is also investing 10 million pounds “to eradicate supply chain malpractice” and is accelerating its independent third party supply chain review with Verisio and Bureau Veritas, an ethical audit and compliance specialist.
It follows media reports of poor working conditions at factories in Leicester that supply Boohoo - reports that led to its shares crashing and big-name brands like Asos, Next and Zalando pulling its brands from their sites.
BooHoo reacting after accusations of poor working conditions
While the company said it has found evidence of non-compliance with its code of conduct from two suppliers which it has now cut ties with, it also said there were inaccuracies in the reports. It said it “has not found evidence of suppliers paying workers 3.50 pounds per hour” and said that Jaswal Fashions Limited “is not and has never been a supplier for the group, and does not operate in the unit stated” as the report suggests.
It also said: “The garments featured were not actually manufactured in Leicester, but in Morocco. Post production, the garments were shipped back to the UK by the supplier to be repackaged into compliant boxes for delivery to the Group's international distribution centre in Burnley. This was the process that was filmed at a premises formerly operated by Jaswal Fashions Limited.”
The focus of the newly launched independent review will be on supplier compliance with minimum wage regulations, compliance with Covid-19 regulations, working hours and record keeping, and right to work documentation and contracts of employment.
It will be led by Alison Levitt QC and the first update will be provided during the publication of Boohoo's half-year results in September.
Photo credit: Boohoo