Global environmental nonprofit Canopy announced the latest brands to join industry stalwarts such as Stella McCartney, H&M, Zara, PVH, Kering and Walmart in signing onto CanopyStyle.
The solutions-driven initiative helps fashion brands, retailers, designers and viscose producers keep Ancient and Endangered Forests out of their supply chains.
The newest signatories include John Lewis & Partners, Wax London, Everlane, L’Estrange, Rachel Comey, BAM Clothing, Nique, Grain de Malice and BN3TH. That brings the number of leading fashion designers and apparel brands committed to keeping products from vital forests out of their fabric supply chains and spurring the production of low-carbon alternatives to 515, representing more than $857 billion in annual revenue, according to Canopy.
In addition to ensuring that their products do not rely on the world’s most vital and biodiverse ecosystems, these brands have committed to investing in the design and use of low-carbon, low-impact next-generation alternatives such as recycled textiles to cutting down forests. The majority of brands signing on have also joined Pack4Good, Canopy’s parallel initiative that helps companies shift their paper packaging to be more sustainable.
“We are proud to celebrate the remarkable progress being made by the more than 500-brand-strong CanopyStyle collective,” said Nicole Rycroft, Canopy’s executive director. “Together, we have shifted almost half of viscose production out of sourcing from endangered forests, secured conservation gains and spurred production of low-carbon Next Gen textiles. The job isn’t done yet–in this turnaround decade, we are redoubling efforts to keep Ancient and Endangered Forests standing, scaling commercial production of circular alternatives and moving the needle on climate action.”
Marija Rompani, director of ethics and sustainability at John Lewis & Partners, said the company recently launched the John Lewis Partnership’s Plan for Nature, which highlights its commitment to protect and restore nature.
“Initiatives such as this showcase our dedication to conserving forests for our planet’s climate and biodiversity,” Rompani said. “CanopyStyle is a brilliant addition to our sustainability [work], and we look forward to our collaboration.”
Canopy noted that when CanopyStyle began there was little knowledge of the hundreds of millions of trees being cut down every year for fabrics like rayon and viscose. To date, the CanopyStyle initiative has secured 50 percent of global viscose production as being at low-risk of originating from Ancient and Endangered Forests.
It has also spurred the transition to low-impact next-gen textiles, including work with the world’s first pulp mill that will rely only on waste textiles as its feedstock and small volumes of viscose made with circular waste textiles by four of the world’s largest man-made cellulosic fiber (MMCF) producers. Canopy, working with local allies, has secured initial conservation and long-term moratorium in 11.4 million hectares of the world’s high-carbon and biodiverse forests.
Canopy noted that the use of trees to make fabrics has more than doubled over the past 30 years, and is projected to grow by another 50 percent to 60 percent within the next decade. This demand continues to threaten rare, ancient forests, even though less than 20 percent of these vital ecosystems remain intact globally.
The organization said forests are a major part of the climate solution because they are carbon storing powerhouses. They are also home to the vast majority of the world’s terrestrial biodiversity.
If the fashion industry continues to work successfully together to end deforestation and forest degradation in supply chains, its impact would avoid forest carbon loss equivalent to eliminating the entire national emissions of a country like Switzerland, Guatemala or Denmark, Canopy added.
Canopy launched CanopyStyle with 20 early igniters in 2013 aiming to highlight the fashion industry’s impact on global deforestation and forest degradation. Now spanning the globe with representation in 20 countries, CanopyStyle is 515 brands strong and has secured commitments from over 90 percent of viscose production to stop sourcing from the world’s Ancient and Endangered Forests.