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How Many Facilities Have Been Affected by Turkey’s Earthquake? Here’s What We Know.

At least 9,210 apparel, footwear and textile manufacturers surround the epicenters of two powerful earthquakes that struck southeastern Turkey and northern Syria on Monday, killing more than 23,600 people and leaving hundreds of thousands homeless.

The actual number could be higher. The Open Supply Hub, the open-source database formerly known as the Open Apparel Registry, hasn’t mapped every apparel supplier in the world, though it has made significant strides since it began collating previously disparate factory lists and standardizing name and address data in 2018. To date, it has leveraged data from hundreds of contributors to peg 90,000 garment and textile producers across 155 countries.

All these are accessible and free for anyone to search, said İrem Yanpar Coşdan, the Open Supply Hub’s in-country community manager for Turkey. A custom dataset, based on the approximate coordinates of the worst-hit areas, narrows down the available facilities to those most likely affected by the disaster. Brands and retailers can also toggle the filters on the tool to find overlaps with their own supply chains.

This could prove useful for buyers that haven’t been able to get in touch with their suppliers in the 10 provinces that have borne the brunt of the destruction: Adana, Adiyaman, Diyarbakir, Gaziantep, Hatay, Kahramanmaras, Kilis, Malatya, Osmaniye, and Sanliurfa. Essential services, including communications, gas, water and electricity, are severely curtailed in these cities, though some buildings may have withstood the damage better than others.

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According to various reports, some intact factories in the region, particularly structurally safer prefabricated steel buildings with self-sufficient capabilities such as off-the-grid power, heating and drinking wells, are opening their doors to workers and their families, as well as other victims of the earthquakes, who have lost their homes and require food and shelter.

The Fair Labor Association (FLA) noted Tuesday that even if a company’s suppliers aren’t located in one of the impacted areas, they might be working with some of the raw-material and upper-tier suppliers from this region. The multistakeholder organization suggests that buyers check with their direct suppliers to “ascertain the situation of your indirect suppliers.”

The FLA also recommends that its members discuss with their suppliers their business continuity plans and provide technical assistance if needed. It has received several requests from suppliers in the 10 provinces about postponing planned social compliance audits and maintaining their active status.

“FLA recommends that its members and other companies sourcing from the region communicate with their suppliers to understand such demands; since many factories are not now operational and the rest of the factories won’t be reaching their full production capacity anytime soon,” it said.

The Ethical Trading Initiative, another multistakeholder group, also said that it encourages all buyers to “play a role in recovery” and “engage and support their affected suppliers, workers and their representatives, during this state of emergency.”

Coşdan agreed.

“Apart from Open Supply Hub, as a person from Türkiye, I would recommend brands to check and support their supply chains,” she told Sourcing Journal, using Turkey’s official name. “We see brands making donations, which is very generous and thoughtful. They mean a lot to those affected by the disaster. On the other hand, the workers in the supply chain are more vulnerable than ever. Brands should contact not only their Tier 1s, but also beyond, including subcontractors, and send support directly to them and the workers.”