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Abercrombie & Fitch Adopts New Sourcing Policy on Wood-Based Fibers

Abercrombie & Fitch Co. (A&F) restated its commitment to tracing the sources of regenerated cellulose fibers, like viscose and rayon, used across all of its brands.

The company teamed up with the Rainforest Action Network (RAN), an organization focused on fighting for sustainability of both the planet and its people, for the brand’s policy changes on wood-based fabrics. RAN’s ‘Out of Fashion’ campaign broaches the issue that wood-based fabrics pose a threat to endangered forests and the surrounding communities.

A&F’s goal is to have comprehensive procedures in place by mid-2018 to give the public the origin of its suppliers’ fibers, in a move towards transparency and sustainability. The procedures are designed to make sure the brand does not work with companies sourcing from ancient or endangered forests, or linked to human rights violations of people that depend on such forests.

“It’s encouraging to see brands beginning to take responsibility for their supply chains,” said Brihannala Morgan, senior forest campaigner with RAN, who worked with Abercrombie & Fitch Co. on the creation of its policy. “Abercrombie & Fitch’s commitments and actions, joining more than 100 other brands who have developed policies, can truly have a positive impact on forests and the people that depend on them.”

A&F joins a growing list of apparel companies implementing policies to ensure its supply chain does not contribute to deforestation. Ralph Lauren and Victoria’s Secret are some of the U.S.-based companies to publicly address these issues.

The new policy acts as a strong signal to makers in Indonesia, Canada, South Africa and Brazil where the production of pulp for fabrics has had a large impact on natural forests and indigenous communities.

“At A&F, we have a history of demonstrating our commitment to environmental responsibility through our actions, and this new policy is a further step on our ongoing sustainability journey,” said Kim Harr, senior director of sustainability at Abercrombie & Fitch Co. “We know there is a need for better supply chain traceability and, with RAN’s support, we can now make an even greater positive impact.”