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H&M Far Exceeds Organic Cotton Goal

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April 28, 2011

Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) used 15,000 tons of organic cotton last year, more than three times the goal the apparel retailer set, and exceeding 2009 usage levels by 77 percent.

H&M logoThis makes H&M one of the largest users of organic cotton in the world, according to the company’s Conscious Actions Sustainability Report for 2010. Due to its accelerate success, the company said it is possible that it will be able to all the cotton it uses from sustainable sources -- either organic, recycled or Better Cotton certified -- by 2020.

The Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) last year helped educate 68,000 cotton farmers on more sustainable farming practices. In 2010, H&M reaped its first cotton harvest from BCI farmers.

The company also announced that it turned 1,600 tons of recycled materials into new clothes, and this year introduced a new cline called Waste, made completely of leftover pieces of textiles from its other collections.

Its top 2011 goal include:

  • Introducing its first Better Cotton products;
  • Developing a strategy for garment recycling;
  • Further developing traceability methods for raw materials;
  • Using LED light for all new store signs;
  • Mapping waste flows at first tier suppliers;
  • Expanding supplier energy efficiency program to include 100-120 factories; and
  • Developing best practice guidelines for handling of construction waste.

H&M is also a founding member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition, which is working to create a universal index to show the environmental impact and fair labor practices for clothing and footwear production.


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