Fair Cloting is NOT optional
Want to be a game changer?
It may sound a little cliché, but Origamo is about making the world a better place.
The apparel industry is flawed, and together with our customers we want to be the game changers!
First, by being 100% committed to making Origamo clothing in ethical factories. This has a direct effect, and the more successful Origamo becomes thanks to you, the bigger the impact.
Then, by raising awareness to influence big labels to move toward fair fashion processes for all their products, not just on 2% of their range to make a nice ad campaign.
As a customer you are involved in this virtuous approach, because when you choose an Origamo product you are one of the good guys, proactively supporting garment manufacturing that treats workers with respect even though this is not yet the industry mainstream.
The ready to wear industry is a flawed system
- 2012 “NOT FOR SALE” report about modern slavery by the Free2Work program.
- 2013 Tragic collapse of the Rana Plaza.
- 2014 “The True Cost” movie about the apparel industry bad labor practices, made by the organization fashion revolution.
- 2016 The Clean Clothes Campaign alliance news feeds, reporting ongoing labor rights abuse cases since the campaign’s start in 1989.
All these diverse examples serve as very sad reminders that labor abuses and modern slavery are alive real issue in the current apparel industry.
This is not acceptable, and our conclusion is that the current production system, based only on intense pricing pressure and the fastest possible turnover is fundamentally flawed.
- Free2Work program report: Apparel-Industry-Trends-2012.pdf
- Rana Plaza: ranaplaza-arrangement.org
- FASHION REVOLUTION: fashionrevolution.org
- Clean Clothes Campaign organization: cleanclothes.org
Origamo Responsible Fashion :
At Origamo we make things differently: in our process Fair production is an essential component of our product specification already from day one, and is as vital as factors like quality, sustainability, and price.
None of these values should be sacrificed in the production of any garment.
That is why on top of using Organic and Eco-Friendly materials, we strive to produce 100% of our clothing in fair conditions for people working on it.
To achieve this ambitious goal, we apply a pragmatic method to trace the production steps from raw material to the final garment manufacturing.
First, we think that on-site visits to the production factories are the best way to assess the working environment, and the best way to understand people's jobs.
On-site visits not only allow us to control the production sites, but also to put faces on the people building Origamo with us.
This last point is much more important than it may initially appear. One of our deepest convictions is that the loss of the link between the products and the people actually making them has resulted in multiple industry abuses. Indeed, when the human connection is lost, guilt vanishes, and this paves the way for inhumane things to happen.
Another important aspect of Origamo’s Fair process is our specific business state of mind, which values transparency, communication and long term business relations.
In practice, this means being transparent with our potential business partners regarding our Fair Fashion processes, and explaining the role they will play in future relations, such as on-site visits and controls.
It means, as well, working with our partner factories to build long term relations, based on understanding each other’s needs and listening to them, rather than just on the cheapest price at any given time.
The trip to Lima for the Pacific Polo :
Since the Pacific Polo Collection is 100% produced in Peru, from the growing of our Organic Cotton through the garment manufacturing process, before actually manufacturing the garments, we flew up to Lima and toured the different factories involved with our production.
Yeah that's me in the picture !
Three companies are involved in this production process for Origamo: The Organic Cotton yarn producer, the yarn dyeing factory, and the manufacturing company.
Frist, the company producing our Organic Cotton yarn. This company has been a pioneer of organic cotton development in Peru, has strong relationships with the farmers, and is involved in helping these rural communities of famers to benefit from the Organic premium.
This company and its network of mills are certified under the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) to produce the Organic Cotton Yarn for Origamo.
Then comes the dyeing factory, which turns the raw white yarn into the different colors of the Pacific Polo collection. The company is GOTS certified for the yarn dyeing process, and has the highest OEKOTEX Class I certification. This means that they operate within strict specifications regarding the dye input they can use, and regarding the way they manage the chemical waste.
We have toured the dyeing factory and the dyeing lab.
This company has been operating in Lima for more than fifty years, and is deeply concerned with the quality of its products, the well-being of its employees, and its impact on the local environment.
Finally, the last step is the garment production itself. Our manufacturing partner has its own factory in Lima and has also outsourced some operations to a contractor factory in the suburbs. We have visited and toured both factories.
We selected this partner based on our understanding of their operation, the transparency of the communication during the pre-production phase, and their willingness to establish our business relationship by meeting us at their working site in Peru.
At this stage it is worthy to mention that our production partner earned the GOTS certification soon after we began our collaboration, and the contractor has begun the certification process.We are very happy to be part of the motivation for these certifications, and also to have independent and external confirmation of our choices on this important matter.