Patagonia, Adidas, Walmart Join Sustainable Apparel Coalition

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

What happens when you put executives from Walmart and Patagonia in a room? This isn’t the start of a bad joke–it’s how the Sustainable Apparel Coalition was born.

The seeds of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition were planted in 2009 when Patagonia and Walmart teamed up to help the latter company create a sustainability assessment tool for its supply chain (Patagonia was also working on an assessment tool for the Outdoor Industry Association). The partnership was successful enough that the pair decided to start working on a larger sustainability assessment tool for the apparel and footwear industries. In the fall of 2009, Walmart and Patagonia invited the CEOs of twelve companies to help found the Sustainable Apparel Coalition.

Fast forward to today. The Coalition is made up of more than 30 annual dues-paying companies and environmental organizations–including Levi Strauss & Co., Li & Fung, the EPA, Marks & Spencer, Mountain Equipment Co-op, New Balance, Nordstrom, Otto Group, and REI–all working together to develop an industrywide supply-chain index that measures water and energy use, greenhouse gas emissions, waste, social labor practices, and more.

The companies have committed to collect supply-chain information, work toward a standard level of best practices, and share information that may be helpful in improving supply chain sustainability.

Source: Fast Company (link opens in a new window)