Outdoor clothing company Patagonia has always been recognized as a leader in social and environmental sustainability. But recent developments at the company could revolutionize how we view clothing and force other businesses to become more transparent about their supply chains.
Patagonia has just released The Footprint Chronicles, an online tool to provide consumers with a closer look at the company’s supply chain. It contains map of the world pinpointing all of the company’s factories and textile mills.
However, every factory is clickable, allowing the user to view even more information such as the proportion of male to female workers, average age, what items are produced at the facility, languages spoken, and the address.
Thus consumers concerned about the social sustainability of the clothes they buy can take a closer look at supply chain of Patagonia. In addition, one can also view the corresponding information Patagonia online store, so you can know right away exactly where products are made and where materials are sourced.
Upon the release of The Footprint Chronicles, Lisa Polley, the editor of Patagonia’s blog “The Cleanest Line”, remarked that the new project is an early step towards improving the company’s transparency. Her hope is that informing consumers of the company’s supply chain will help them to make informed decisions about the clothing line.
In addition, it could force other companies to also divulge information about their supply chains. This might in turn pressure them to clean-up their manufacturing processes.
Already other clothing companies are making an effort to attract eco-conscious individuals. For instance, Nike has just established a new green venture capital arm to promote green technology and renewable energy.
Do you think that consumers will see the value in a resource such as The Footprint Chronices? Will it pressure other companies into embracing increased transparency?