The SAC’s Higg Materials Sustainability Index (Higg MSI) is the apparel industry’s most trusted tool to accurately measure the environmental sustainability impacts of materials.
The Higg MSI offers brands, retailers, and manufacturers the opportunity to make key decisions about a product’s sustainability during the early supply chain stage of material selection.
The Higg MSI includes 79 base materials, such as cotton, polyester, and silk, which, when blended and processed in different ways, create hundreds of thousands of materials used across the industry. Applying trusted metrics, the Higg MSI assesses a material’s impacts and scores the results. Calculations account for global warming potential, water scarcity, abiotic resource depletion, eutrophication, and chemistry.
Lower scores indicate better sustainability performance, giving designers greater insight into creating more sustainable apparel. The Higg MSI also features manufacturer-specific data that is representative of specific processes or facilities. The SAC urges the entire apparel sector to use the tool and add to its growing library of materials via the Higg MSI Contributor. Learn more here.
Why Use the Higg MSI?
The Higg MSI is an extensive database devoted to the environmental impacts of materials production. The tool assesses the environmental impacts of a material and computes a sustainability score. The information in the database can be leveraged in various ways to clearly understand what causes a material’s environmental impact and which production processes will reduce it.
The Higg MSI was developed specially for the textile industry through global industry-wide consensus. Before the Higg MSI, no tool in the apparel industry offered common criteria for life-cycle assessments, methodology, and procedures.
Using the Higg MSI
This easy-to-use tool offers several ways to improve the sustainability of materials used in production.
Assess materials to
Improve the sustainability of your customized materials using data from the 79 base materials available in the Higg MSI. Select better production processes for achieving your company’s material specifications.
Compare materials to make better choices
Evaluate materials side by side to understand environmental tradeoffs between options.
Dive into data
Save materials in a customized material library, see Life Cycle Impact Assessment (LCIA) results, and analyze data in an Excel export.