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Minister takes up cause of sustainability at LFW

Mar '10
The year 2009, was the year which gave boost to the whole concept of go green in the textile and apparel industry. An ever growing segment of the fashion industry is stepping up and standing up for the cause of a sustainable and eco-friendly environment.

One of the latest demonstrations of this commitment was observed during the recently concluded London Fashion Week's, sustainable clothing conference shows.

London Fashion Week saw a ministerial address, from Environment Minister Dan Norris announcing new signatories to the Sustainable Clothing Action Plan (SCAP).

New signatories this year include: British Retail Consortium, Ethical Fashion Forum, Forum for the Future, Levis Strauss, MADE-BY, Cotton Made in Africa, RSPCA, Society of Dyers and Colourists.

Speaking at the SCAP update at London Fashion Week Dan Norris, Environment Minister had said, “I'm delighted to be here amongst the industry front runners on sustainable clothing. Because of your participation, the Action Plan and wider Clothing Roadmap initiative is progressing as planned and we're as committed as ever to working with the sector on improving the environmental and ethical footprint of fashion.

“Over the last year, the actions the clothing sector & government committed to under the Action Plan are well underway or now completed and being showcased at today's conference in the Southbank Centre”, he added by saying.

Dan Norris's high profile presence and recent statements in support of the cause of SCAP during London Fashion Week along with the involvement of designers, high end brands and retailer like Levi Strauss & Co, has certainly opened the doors for an entirely new approach towards trade, business and sustainability.

Fibre2fashion spoke to a spokesperson of the Department of Environment & Rural Affairs (DEFRA), UK and asked him to elaborate on this new development that is a first step towards consolidating and carving a niche in the fashion industry relevant to the sustainable practices.

Speaking exclusively to fibre2fashion, the spokesperson from DEFRA shared that “The Sustainable Clothing Roadmap, launched in autumn 2007 has been coordinated by DEFRA since its inception. The Roadmap provides a platform for an integrated approach to sustainable clothing throughout the sector. Key actions of the same include:

•Engaging with over 300 organisations along the clothing supply chain.
•Chairing quarterly steering group meetings, with stakeholders including high street brands, retailers, manufacturers, charities, government departments.
•Organising four annual stakeholder conferences (growing in size each year – over 200 attendees at the most recent event held 23 February 10).
•Funding four research projects to ascertain where actions would be most effective, on topics such as reducing the impacts of clothes cleaning and maximising reuse and recycling of UK clothing and textiles.

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