Ethical SUP threads, by popular demand…
When customers asked if we could make T-shirts and hoodies, we refused, being sure that we would not be able to find a clothing partner who met our high ethical and sustainable standards, but at a price point consistent with our ‘good value premium quality’ ethos.
We also wanted clothing that was more than just a logo on Tee or hoodie, a design that reflected the fun of SUPlife and the sense of humour of our SUP customers. Something that was both a little childish, and a little bit serious. So we needed time to think and speak to customers.
So we went away and did a lot of research. And after more than 12 months of searching and planning, we’ve made the impossible possible; a fairly priced, ethical range of clothing, that's both fun and carries a serious message.
THE 10 PRINCIPLES OF ETHICAL SUP CLOTHING
Principle 1 - organic is best
All of our earthpositive range of clothing is a 100% organic product produced (certified under the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) certified by Control Union and The Soil Association).
The certification encompasses the farming, production and distribution, ensuring full traceability of every product.
This also means that our clothing is 100% free from genetically modified organisms, if this is a concern of yours.
Principle 2 – reduce and reuse waste
The garment manufacture process can create massive amounts of cotton waste. Believe it or not up to 80% of the raw cotton material can be wasted in the manufacture of clothing. Our earthpositive range supplier have done all they can to reduce cotton waste: 1) After ginning (separation of cotton lint & seed) much of the cotton seed can be used to make cotton seed oil and food for cattle 2) During the spinning process. The shorter cotton fibres are separated and used to make lower quality textiles 3) All leftovers from the cutting/dyeing stage are used for rope or for the recycled salvage line of clothing
Principle 3 – green energy
The factories of our supply chain use only green energy. 30 wind turbines turn wind power into clean, low carbon.
By switching to renewable energy we have reduced the carbon footprint of EarthPositive® apparel by 90%.
And all of McConks HQ is powered by green energy.
Principle 4 - Ethical Trade practices and treating employees fairly
To help tackle the social injustice often seen in manufacturing, commonly known as sweatshop labour, our supply chain goes further, making transparent the manufacturing supply chain through an independent audit by the Fair Wear Foundation, which promotes fair labour conditions in the clothing industry.
The entire production chain of EarthPositive® is controlled by a Code of Conduct and audited by the Independent Fair Wear Foundation (FWF)
Pick your cotton carefully We guarantee that we do not use cotton from Uzbekistan, or other known producers where the use of child labour is widespread. This follows the recommendations of Environmental Justice Foundations “clean cotton campaign”. The complete traceability of certified organic cotton allows us to make this guarantee
Principle 5 - Reduce, Re-use , Recycle packaging
We work with our supplier to minimise packaging, and to use recycled materials wherever possible. And if this isn’t possible to only use recyclable materials.
Principle 6. – Sustainable Transportation
Our clothing suppliers have a ‘No Airfreight’ policy, which matches McConks own desire not to use airfreight. Throughout this supply chain we use containerized ocean shipping, thus the carbon footprint generated by transporting our apparel to UK more like a fingerprint, less than 1% of the total. At McConks and in our supply chain, we cannot fix all the world’s environmental problems. But we can make sure our activities don’t make them worse
Principle 7. Look after our water
This is obviously a really important one to us. The factory uses a state of the art closed loop treatment system, which allows around over 90% of the effluent to be reused, and protects the local water environment!
Principle 8. Use less water
This is also really important to us. Did you know it can take more than 20,000 litres of water to produce 1kg of cotton, equivalent to a single T-shirt and a pair of jeans. All of our cotton comes from a region (Ahmadabad in India) that receives around 95% of its water from the monsoon rain that falls in May to October. This prevents the need for damaging large scale irrigation normally associated with conventional cotton farming, and which often conflict with environmental or local social requirements for water. And going organic uses less water than conventional cotton.
Principle 9. Use less carbon, certified
Our supplier, EarthPositive® has reduced the carbon footprint of their T-shirts by 90%. But don’t just take our word for it. The Carbon Trust is trialling a carbon certification label with early adopters, and EarthPositive® was granted the first such label for a textile product.
Principle 10. Education after delivery
Work with customers
Save the Climate – Wash cool, Line dry
Reducing the washing cycle from 40° to 30° saves energy
Not using tumble drying saves energy
We also recommend eco-friendly detergents that are bio-degradable