In the eighth year since its founding, the Sustainable Apparel Coalition gathered members in Bangalore, India for its annual full member meeting and manufacturing forum. For the second consecutive year, Planet Textiles also took place in conjunction with the SAC meetings. The largest SAC gathering to date, more than five hundred participants attended the week of events. Sustainability leaders representing more than one hundred brands, retailers and manufacturers shared their experiences and perspectives through a variety of panels and lively discussions.
Set in Bangalore, a global hub for apparel manufacturing, discussions at the full member meeting ranged from the launch of the Higg Index 3.0, putting transparency into practice and reducing environmental impact through SAC’s suite of tools. Notably, numerous conversations surrounding the value of elevating the role of manufacturers within the supply chain emerged this year, marking what seemed like a cultural turning point within the SAC.
Planet Textiles offered a more in-depth look at wastewater and chemical management, specifically, while highlighting the new partnership between Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) and the SAC. “We’re trying to standardize sustainability assessments, to help alleviate audit-fatigue,” Jason Kibbey, SAC CEO said. “We want to bring things together in the industry and consolidate so there isn’t so much confusion and there aren’t so many different programs. We want to make this feasible and scalable for the manufacturing base to implement supply chain sustainability.”
To conclude the week of events, attendees had the unique opportunity to visit local textile manufacturers and see the impact of the Higg Index firsthand. Full member meeting platinum and gold sponsors Aditya Birla Group and Arvind offered tours of their respective garment and denim factories in Bangalore as well as a plantation tour several hours outside the city. The tours further exemplified the value manufacturers bring to the production of apparel, textiles and footwear globally, and the crucial role they play in sustainably securing the future of the industry.