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Zara Launches Sustainable Apparel Collection

Zara just took another step toward a sustainable future.

The Inditex-owned retailer this week debuted Join Life, an environmentally-friendly collection for Autumn/Winter 2016 made with preferred materials like organic cotton, Tencel and recycled wool. A hybrid of feminine and masculine style, the new line features clean-cut, mineral-hued garments that dramatically reduce the retailer’s carbon footprint.

Last year, Inditex pledged to the United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals, which emphasize the improvement of economic growth, environmental protection and social inclusion among companies and their supply chains.

According to Inditex’s 2015 report, the company made significant progress with social indicators and environmental indicators compared to 2014. Supplier clusters in many nations, including China, India and Portugal had more sewing factories linked to them with purchases. More workers from the supplier cluster countries were also hired, fostering economic growth and career opportunities in the process. For environmental indicators, Inditex also advanced its sustainability commitment by reducing relative power consumption by 11 percent and increasing its renewable energy use to 190.10 kilowatts per hour.

Coinciding with these achievements, Inditex decided to develop Join Life for its international shoppers, so they can play their own part in creating a more sustainable fashion future.

Materials are at the heart of Zara’s sustainable fashion commitment and the retailer incorporated organic cotton, recycled cotton, Tencel (fiber derived from sustainably approved woods) and recycled wool into the collection’s apparel. With these environmentally-friendly materials, in addition to water-saving technology and renewable energy, Join Life’s clothing production process aligns with global sustainability standards across multiple levels.

To be part of the Join Life collection, a garment must meet certain internal qualifications, including: all factories that wet process the primary fabric used must be evaluated by the Green to Wear Standard of environmental sustainability and receive a classification of A or B, or have a continuous improvement plan with ambitious deadlines; and the primary fabric used in the product must be Better Cotton, Lenzing Modal, organic cotton, Tencel, or recycled cotton, polyester or polyamide.

Two months ago, Inditex teamed up with Lenzing for the production of “premium textile raw materials” made from fabric waste generated by the company. Inditex also announced plans to put garment collection containers throughout its store network.