Following continued action by Greenpeace, three more global brands join Zara in going toxic free. Joining the move are Levis, Mango and Esprit.
For an organisation more known for scaling power stations than fashion, Greenpeace have certainly given the industry a real shake down. First Zara committed to going toxic free in less than two weeks.
The victory was not won without a battle however, particular with Levis, who really stuck their heels in. The company had been accused by Greenpeace of polluting rivers in Mexico and China with toxic dyes. When they refused to act activists hit Levis stores around the world.
Obviously keen to maintain their sustainable image, Levis hit back. In a blog post later that week they insisted that: “[we’ve] joined key industry partners Nike, Adidas, H&M and others on the Joint Roadmap toward Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals. The goal? Zero discharge of hazardous chemicals by 2020.”
However Greenpeace said the company’s plans lack ambition. In a statement they replied: “Right now, rivers in China, Mexico and elsewhere are being polluted with hazardous chemicals. We need brands like Levi’s— who have been caught contributing toward the problem—to take urgent action in order to stop these environmental crimes. Nice words are not enough.”
However the stand-off didn’t last that long. Yesterday Levis appeared to have a change of heart and finally delivered.
On their website Greenpeace said: “Today’s commitment from Levi’s is great news for people power and the environment. Levi’s will begin requiring its largest suppliers (each with multiple facilities) in China, Mexico and elsewhere in the Global South to disclose pollution data as early as the end of June 2013. This means that’s those living near all these facilities gain crucial access to information about discharges into their local environment – a basic right that up to this stage they had been denied.”