We would like to tell you about our activities in the field of sustainability, starting with a brief overview:
What we do in the field of sustainability
- participation in sustainability program JOLO Fashion Group, our parent company, which has also appointed a sustainability coordinator
- co-signatory “Sustainable Clothing and Textile” Agreement
- introduction Supplier Manual “the Way we Work”
- introduction Restricted Substances List
- mapped our production locations
- minimum requirements for a production location formulated
- introduction Producer Assessment Policy
- supplier summit organized for our main suppliers in China
- independent consultant appointed to assess production locations and guide them in improvement process
- started using organic cotton (from the end of 2019 the entire newborn collection will be produced in organic cotton)
- started using recycled polyester for jackets
LC Kidswear is part of the JOLO Fashion Group and is responsible for the two brands Le Chic and LCEE. Since the beginning of 2016, our product manager, stylists and merchandisers have been involved in the group’s sustainability program. When the Sustainable Clothing and Textile Covenant was concluded in July 2016 between the Dutch government, sector organizations and social organizations, LC Kidswear was one of the signatories. Since then, we have taken steps every year to make our brands more sustainable and to contribute to sustainability within JOLO Fashion Group as a whole.
The majority of our production takes place in China, where more than 80% of our purchasing is done. In order to be able to properly assess the risks in this country, we have made an analysis, which has revealed the following priorities:
- fair rewards
- safety and health in the workspace
- use of raw materials
This risk analysis can be downloaded here.
In China we work with a permanent partner who selects suppliers and supervises production. A small part is produced in Turkey and India. Because we produce many different styles in relatively small quantities, our partner is looking for mostly smaller sewing workshops that are characterized by flexibility in switching styles and craftsmanship to manufacture the small detailed garments for children.
In 2018 LC Kidswear worked with 19 suppliers who represented 24 production locations. We want to have a long-term relationship with our suppliers and work together as partners to further shape the development towards sustainability in our industry.
In November 2017, JOLO Fashion Group introduced a “the Way we Work” handbook for all its suppliers, including those for LC Kidswear, with a number of principles for sustainability.
The manual now has three components that are shown in the diagram below.
An important partner is AMFORI, the organization that has developed a worldwide Code of Conduct under the name BSCI (Business Social Compliance Initiative).
The first “Supplier Summit” took place in China in November 2018. This is a meeting for our most important suppliers to learn together about sustainability and to make concrete agreements with each other. During this meeting we introduced our principles for sustainability, on which we will assess our production locations in the coming year. These principles are aligned with the BSCI principles. Based on the findings, an improvement plan will be drawn up should this prove necessary. We also help the production locations through training and coaching to realize improvements.
Our principles for a responsible chain are based on 7 requirements:
- Insight into all production locations where our products are made
- Preventing child labor
- No forced labor
- No serious security risks
- Real and accurate wages and clear recording of working hours
- Accident insurance for workers
- No serious environmental pollution
In addition to a responsible chain, LC Kidswear believes it is important to take into account the impact on the environment and animal welfare of our product. The fashion industry is globally responsible for a major impact on the environment. We want to contribute by choosing more sustainable materials, applying restrictions in the field of chemicals and avoiding animal-based materials if animal welfare is at stake.
That is why we have set ourselves the following goals:
- We want to work as much as possible with organic cotton for our products made from this material. We have already started with the clothing for the little ones, but it does not stop there. In the coming years, clothing for older children will also be made step by step from organic cotton wherever possible.
- For our products made from 100% polyester, like many of our jackets, we have opted for the use of recycled polyester. Old items of clothing that are collected in China are chopped into small pieces and then reduced by a chemical process to the basic raw material from which new yarns, fabrics and, ultimately, items of clothing are made. Here too we started with a small number of styles. In the coming years we anticipate growth to gradually make as many of our jackets as possible from this material.
- The Dutch “Animals Act” focuses on the intrinsic value of the animal. This means that animals have their own value and are sentient beings. Animal welfare is about the quality of life of animals. LC Kidswear has chosen not to use the following animal-based materials: coats, ducks and geese that are plucked alive and / or forced fed, wool from sheep whose skin is cut away (mulesing) and shells.
- We have made an RSL (restricted substances list) for the use of chemicals, which is in line with European legislation and goes a little further in some respects. All our suppliers have received this list and confirmed that production is taking place within these restrictions. From the second half of 2019, we will have a number of items of clothing from our collections tested on these principles.
Working on sustainability is a continuous learning process, both for us and for our suppliers and customers. The LC Kidswear team has participated in the sustainability program of JOLO Fashion Group in recent years and has learned a lot in the field of sustainability in the textile industry. Based on this knowledge, we have started various projects, as described earlier. Our suppliers are part of the annual “Supplier Summit” and, like us, we learn about the 17 Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations, including choosing sustainable materials, saving water, pollution, etc.
We have started to work much more consciously with our quality process in order to make even fewer mistakes in samples, resulting in fewer rejected items of clothing, less last-minute air transport and, above all, less stress for everyone who helps us to make our products. to make. It is our intention to reach the end consumer together with partners and customers and to help them make positive sustainable choices.
For more information, please contact Marjoleine Bakker, sustainability coordinator at JOLO Fashion Group. Her e-mail address is email@example.com