American Fashion Network Partners with the Better Cotton Initiative
As the global population increases, demand for raw materials has gone up and sustainability, in the global supply chain, has become a necessity. Cotton is one such resource. Due to difficult growing conditions, supplies have been constrained and some cotton has been sourced from environmentally-damaging producers. Tragically, we have also seen issues with forced labor with unscrupulous cotton growers around the world.
American Fashion Network is dedicated to producing high-quality products in an environmentally-sustainable and ethical way. With membership in the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI), a global nonprofit organization that serves as the largest cotton sustainability program in the world, we are helping our customers and the end-line consumer achieve their sustainability goals.
BCI was founded in 2009, initiated by a group of profit and non-profit organizations, who wanted to ensure that their cotton supplies were environmentally-sustainable and economically beneficial to the farmers and the workers who produce it.
The Initiative has trained millions of farmers to produce cotton using fewer chemicals and less water, while increasing land yield. Between 2019 and 2020, 6.2 million metric tons of Better Cotton were produced, including 2.3 million metric tons in Brazil and more than 1 million in India. The program has been growing, spreading to a number of new cotton producing countries in recent years, including Greece, and most recently Egypt. Ten countries are now participants. The program has focused on empowering farmers and workers, which is vital to stopping abusive practices in the cotton supply chain and increasing employment in cotton-producing countries, many of which remain in poverty.
With the world's population expected to increase by another 2 billion people by 2050, it is imperative that we make clothing production environmentally sustainable and worker friendly without causing big price increases that would hit the world's financially stressed, the hardest. The Better Cotton Initiative is a central player in that effort and American Fashion Network is very proud to be affiliated with it.
We are grateful to organizations like the Better Cotton Initiative who work every day to make it possible to produce quality product, at a reasonable price, that benefits our planet.