Better Cotton, the world's largest cotton certifier, has signed the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) Sustainability Pledge ahead of the launch of its own Traceability Solution at the end of 2023, joining a list of 90 others including Inditex, Vivienne Westwood, Retraced and WWF.
The Sustainability Pledge is an open-source suite of policy recommendations, guidelines and standards designed to enable industry players to authenticate their sustainability claims. Its aim is to create a ‘community of practice’ that works together to develop traceability and transparency as key enablers for sustainability and circularity.
“Once we know the provenance of the clothes that we buy, and the path they have travelled in global value chains, then we can make informed decisions as consumers about the sustainability claims of those goods. We welcome Better Cotton’s pledge and call on other players to join and make traceability and sustainability the new normal in the textile industry,” commented Elisabeth Türk, director for economic cooperation and trade at UNECE.
UNECE launched the framework to stimulate knowledge sharing and bring together solution providers in the belief that companies, academics and experts can work together to promote transparency in the supply chain through open discourse. By recognising legitimate tools and projects, it also aims to benefit policy makers, companies, workers and consumers alike.
“We are signing UNECE’s Sustainability Pledge not only to affirm our commitment to improving traceability and transparency in Better Cotton supply chains, but also in support of traceability and the use of more credible sustainability claims across the industry,” said Alia Malik, senior director of data and traceability at Better Cotton.
Better Cotton's own Traceability Solution, planned for the end of the year, will enable its retailer and brand members to verify the country of origin of the Better Cotton cotton in their products and enable farmers and suppliers to continue accessing increasingly regulated international value chains. Its development is based on extensive consultation with over 1,500 stakeholders, including suppliers, members and industry consultants.