Standardizing the Measurement of Social and Environmental Impacts in Facilities

Apparel, footwear, and textile production takes place at thousands of facilities around the world. Each facility plays a key role in the overall sustainability of the industry. The Higg Facility Tools offer standardized social and environmental assessments that facilitate conversations among value chain partners to socially and environmentally improve every tier in the global value chain.

Pratibha Syntex Logo

Hear from SAC member Pratibha Syntex about why they use the Higg Index in their facilities.

Higg Facility Environmental Module

The environmental cost of producing and wearing clothes is high. Making a typical pair of jeans can require nearly 2,000 gallons of water and 400 megajoules of energy. Once purchased, caring for that same pair of jeans throughout its lifespan can emit more than 30 kilograms of carbon dioxide. That’s equivalent to driving a car 78 miles.

The Higg Facility Environmental Module (Higg FEM) informs manufacturers, brands, and retailers about the environmental performance of their individual facilities, empowering them to scale sustainability improvements.

The Higg FEM provides facilities a clear picture of their environmental impacts. It helps them identify and prioritize opportunities for performance improvements.

The Higg FEM assesses:

  • Environmental Management Systems
  • Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions
  • Water Use
  • Wastewater
  • Emissions to Air (If Applicable)
  • Waste Management
  • Chemical Management

By using the Higg Facility Environmental Module, in the first three years alone, our suppliers implemented 250 energy savings programs that have saved them over $3.5 million in energy costs. This is a win-win for our suppliers and our business. We are proud of the work of our suppliers to achieve these efficiencies while improving their Higg performance and reducing the environmental impact of our supply chain.

JEANNETTE FERRAN ASTORGA, VICE PRESIDENT OF CORPORATE RESPONSIBILITY, ASCENA RETAIL GROUP, PARENT COMPANY OF ANN TAYLOR & LOFT BRANDS

The Higg Facility Environmental Module provides an easy to use self-assessment framework to benchmark our progress towards achieving our aspirational goals. Using the Higg Index as our guiding roadmap has allowed us to meet environmental management requirements of our customers and other industry certifications.

Delman Lee, President & Chief Technology Officer, TAL GROUP

The Higg Facility Environmental Module has helped us in defining, monitoring and achieving our environmental goals. Over the last seven years, through different versions of the tool, the Higg FEM has helped us to avoid multiple audits and has a set common language for understanding factories’ impacts globally. The benchmarking feature has enabled us to compare our performance and find further improvement areas.

ABHISHEK BANSAL, HEAD OF SUSTAINABILITY, ARVIND LIMITED

Higg Facility Social & Labor Module

Everyone deserves to work in a safe and healthy environment where they receive fair pay. To improve social and labor conditions for the workers who produce billions of garments, textiles, and footwear each year, brands and manufacturers need to first measure the social impact of global facilities.

The Higg Facility Social & Labor Module (Higg FSLM) promotes safe and fair social and labor conditions for value chain workers all over the world. Facilities can use the scored assessment to understand hotspots and reduce audit fatigue. Instead of focusing on compliance, they can dedicate time and resources to making lasting systemic changes.

The Higg FSLM assesses:

  • Recruitment and Hiring
  • Working Hours
  • Wages and Benefits
  • Employee Treatment
  • Employee Involvement
  • Health and Safety
  • Termination
  • Management Systems
  • Empowering People and Communities

We are pleased to announce that after launching the new and improved Higg FSLM in April 2021 with the Converged Assessment Framework (CAF) v1.4 methodology, the updated scoring feature is now live! The standardized scoring system for the FSLM makes it easier for companies to analyze year-over-year performance, move away from costly proprietary systems, identify opportunities for improvement, and create safe and fair conditions for value chain workers all over the world. 

The Higg FSLM is directly informed by the findings of the Social & Labor Convergence Program (SLCP). Learn more about the SLCP.

Janet Apparel

The verified Higg FSLM fully integrates the SLCP Converged Assessment Framework, helping shift the industry towards convergence, away from proprietary assessments. By using this tool, companies contribute to an industry-wide effort to reduce audit duplication that will allow for greater focus on meaningful improvements to social and labor conditions in global supply chains.

JANET MENSINK, EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, SOCIAL & LABOR CONVERGENCE PROGRAM

ovs spa

At OVS, we truly believe that a joint effort is the only way to make our industry as one of the change makers towards a more equitable and sustainable world. The new scored FSLM represents a powerful tool to recognize and reward the best practices in our supply chain. Instead of only checking a number of non-compliances (often pedantically), having a performance summary gives us a comprehensive view to understand the progress and to support in addressing real and more impactful priorities.

SIMONE COLOMBO, HEAD OF CORPORATE SUSTAINABILITY, OVS SPA

The scored Higg Facility Social & Labor Module frees up time and financial resources that our facilities would typically spend on individual audits. By using the Higg Index, we can redirect resources to better support employees instead. Through the digital Higg Index platform, we can more easily connect with our business partners around the world and more effectively collaborate on improving the industry.

VIJAY N. SUVARNA, HEAD OF COMPLIANCE, ASIATAN