The campaign calls on all companies to adopt and implement an individual detox solution and to commit to “phase out” the use and release of all toxic chemicals from their global supply chain and products by 1 January, 2020.
To highlight the progress being made by major clothing companies, Greenpeace has ranked brands into three categories – leaders, greenwashers and laggards – to demonstrate to the public which companies are doing their bit to create a toxic-free future.
Among the “greenwashers” are sportswear giant Nike and Adidas, as well as Chinese Li Ning, who are being targeted by the pressure group to follow through on their commitments to clean up their toxic habits. The Detox Catwalk states that these companies are “masking ineffective actions with paper promises and weak commitments”.
Whereas fashion chains including H&M, Mango, Uniqlo and Marks and Spencers, designer fashion house Valentino and sportswear firm Puma have been recognised for pushing forward with concrete action towards their Detox goals by putting into practice “credible timelines, concrete actions and on-the-ground implementation”.
“Greenwashers like Nike and adidas would do well to look to Detox trendsetters such as Mango and Uniqlo that are responding to the urgency of the global water crisis,” said Ilze Smit, Detox Campaigner at Greenpeace International. “These leaders are already working to lead a transparency revolution in their supply chains and eliminate the worst chemicals from their products and production processes.”
Smit, added: “Nike and adidas present themselves to the public as fashion conscious companies but their inaction has so far proven otherwise. How can their customers and the affected local communities believe they are ‘all in’ for toxic-free fashion when they fail to follow through on their Detox commitments?”
Greenpeace names Nike and Adidas “greenwashers”
Though Adidas has hit back at the claims stating that it doesn’t agree with Greenpeace’s rankings and that it has been working to eliminate hazardous chemicals in its supply chain.
In a statement, Adidas said: “We continue to uphold and fulfil the commitments we made to Greenpeace when they first launched their campaign, and to deliver against these. And to aid us in this, we were a founding member of the Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) Initiative, launched in 2010 to drive change in industry practices.
“The adidas Group is globally recognised as a leader in environmental sustainability. For years, we have been successfully working to reduce and progressively eliminate hazardous chemicals in our supply chain.”
The Detox Catwalk also denounces “laggard” apparel firms like Gap, Diesel and Armani, which Greenpeace claims are “uncommitted toxic addicts” that have yet to make a credible detox commitment.
With regards Gap, Smit stated: “Though the company claims to be cleaning up its act, hiding behind the ineffective Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals industry group’s paper commitments, there is a gap between its words and its actions.
“It is time Gap took full individual responsibility for its toxic addiction and caught up with the rest of the industry to become the fashion-forward company its customers expect it to be.”
On the interactive website, each company has their own listing featuring company information and its corporate social responsibility, as well as whether it has followed through with those promises.
Image: Greenpeace Detox Catwalk