Eco-Fashion: Quickly Growing, Use Of Organically Grown Cotton Hits New Highs

The news is out that H&M, well known for style on a budget, is now the leader in organic cotton purchasing. The use of organic cotton in the Swedish retailers manufacturing jumped 77% since last year, (via Ecotextile News) and now beats WalMart, who was leading last year in purchase of organic cotton. Their goal is admirable: "H&M continues to invest in organic cotton. We are one of the world's largest users of organic cotton and the goal is to increase the volumes by at least 50% each year until 2013." (from their website
I was hard-pressed, however, to find any section on the site that was for "organic cotton', but they will be surfacing in stores and the percentages should increase over time.

John Mowbray, editor of Ecotextile, told AFP at the Texworld trade fair in Paris this month: "There's a paradigm shift in the textile sector; three years ago sustainability was not on the agenda. Now a lot of retailers and brands want to move regardless of what their suppliers think. They think consumers want transparency. Brands are driving change." (via grist.org)
Lest you get your hopes up too high, let me remind you that even with this, use of organic cotton in the industry is  still under 4% of the total used in apparel worldwide. But these are great strides, and the changes seem to be catching on and picking up speed.
 
This is good news in many ways, but beware of the possibility of more greenwashing, as others may try to put on a virtual 'Organic' label, just to try to cash in on our good intentions.

For now, three cheers for more organic cotton in clothing!


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