The Sustainable Apparel Coalition is the apparel, footwear and textile industry’s foremost alliance for sustainable production. The coalition’s main focus is on building the Higg Index, a standardized supply chain measurement tool for all industry participants to understand the environmental and social and labor impacts of making and selling their products and services. By measuring sustainability performance, the industry can address inefficiencies, resolve damaging practices, and achieve the environmental and social transparency that consumers are starting to demand. By joining forces in a Coalition, we can address the urgent, systemic challenges that are impossible to change alone.
Behind the scenes at the Sustainable Apparel Coalition
The Sustainable Apparel Coalition was born from a dynamic and unconventional meeting of the minds. In 2009, Walmart, America’s biggest retailer and Patagonia, one of the world’s most progressive brands, came together with a radical mission: Collect peers and competitors from across the apparel, footwear and textile sector and together, develop a universal approach to measuring sustainability performance.
The centerpiece of the SAC is the Higg Index, a suite of ground-breaking assessment tools that empower brands, retailers, and manufacturers to measure their environmental and social and labor impacts at every stage of the lifecycle and value chain, and then demonstrate the data in a standardized and simplified way. For those just starting to implement sustainable practices, The Higg Index guides their important first steps, helping to distinguish strengths and weaknesses in the supply chain. For those already deeply engaged, it has more advanced potential, such as benchmarking sustainability performance against other SAC members, identifying macro risks and performing targeted research and analytics.
Open access to the individuals and organizations driving the shift to sustainable production is perhaps the greatest reward for joining the SAC. Members commit to radical cooperation to meet shared goals, peers and competitors share tried-and-tested practices and sustainability leaders help new adopters map the path forward. Our annual meetings are where members forge personal connections while improving the Higg Index together in a cooperative atmosphere that can only be described as extraordinary. SAC members inform, invigorate and sustain each other along the challenging road of transforming sustainability goals into realities.
This is about industry transformation so everyone can benefit from reduced risk as well as efficiency.
—Jason Kibbey, CEO, SAC