Início Fashion UNECE launches initiative to boost global garment sector traceability

UNECE launches initiative to boost global garment sector traceability


The United Nations Economic Commission for Europe (UNECE) has officially launched a Community of Practice aimed at scaling up traceability and transparency in the garment and footwear industries. This announcement comes after a three-year challenge set by the European Union and UN Member States to demonstrate the feasibility of these practices in the sector.

UNECE has launched a Community of Practice to enhance traceability and transparency in the garment and footwear industries.
Over three years, more than 20 pilot projects and 110 pledges demonstrated positive impacts.
At the Milan event, UNECE released a report detailing best practices and progress.
The initiative supports future legislation.

Over this period, more than 20 pilot projects and 110 pledges from leading brands, manufacturers, NGOs, industry associations, and sustainability initiatives across nearly 30 countries have proven the positive impacts of tracing various materials like cotton, leather, synthetics, cellulose, and wool from production to use and beyond, the UNECE said in a press release.

The lessons learned over the past three years under the Sustainability Pledge initiative were discussed at the event ‘Vision & Visibility: Scaling Transparency’ held at Triennale Milano. The event gathered over 200 partners for a day of open sessions and workshops. UNECE marked the occasion by launching its Community of Practice, which aims to scale up best practices and common sustainability solutions for the industry.

At the Milan event, UNECE also launched ‘the Sustainability Pledge 3-years monitoring report,’ providing the Community of Practice with an overview of industry best practices for enhancing traceability and transparency. The report includes key data analysis from the 100 pledges submitted to UNECE, detailing progress and impacts achieved over the last three years, as well as the drivers and challenges faced by industry actors. The development of Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) at corporate, product, and material levels, along with tailored recommendations, provides clear guidance for measuring traceability and transparency.

The Sustainability Pledge is driving future legislation to regulate the clothing industry. By tracking clothes, it has supported local production globally and empowered consumers with the information they demand. The Community of Practice aims to accelerate traceability and transparency initiatives and share best practices to create large-scale changes in the apparel and footwear industry.

The clothing and footwear industry is a significant contributor to environmental degradation and global warming, and is also notorious for poor working conditions that often violate human rights. Many workers, especially women, young people, homeworkers, and migrants, frequently operate in substandard conditions. Despite these issues, the demand for clothing and footwear continues to grow annually. To address these challenges, the sector must lead the environmental and social transition to improve lives and achieve Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) 5, 8, 13, 15, and 17.

UNECE’s collaborative work with over 800 experts, policymakers, businesses, academia, and NGOs has resulted in a set of policy recommendations, guidelines, and standards. These tools enable industry players to authenticate their sustainability claims and improve transparency and traceability across the value chain. This is facilitated by a free open-source framework tested in pilot projects, which also explored the role of innovation and advanced technologies like blockchain and DNA traceability.

At each key stage of the manufacturing process, information is stored in the blockchain, creating an immutable record for tracking and tracing. Materials and products can be identified and localized at the source through the information exchange standard and the open source blockchain system. This system allows even small producers with only a smartphone to upload their data to the blockchain.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DP)



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