Cotton is our most important raw material. Popular and in demand, it also takes a lot of natural resources to produce – which is why we are working to promote more sustainable cotton cultivation.
Cotton is the most used fibre in our sector. The cotton industry employs millions of people and is crucial to many countries’ economy and development. But large quantities of water and chemicals also go towards growing cotton. According to the World Wide Fund for Nature, it can take up to 29,000 litres of water to produce one kilogram of cotton.
There is a lot we can do to ensure cotton is more sustainable. Our goal is for all our cotton to be more sustainable by 2020. More sustainable cotton includes organic cotton, recycled cotton and Better Cotton.
Better Cotton Initiative
KappAhl is a proud member of the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI). BCI works to make global cotton production better for the people who produce it and for the environment it grows in. It also works to create better conditions for the cotton industry in the future.
BCI teaches cotton growers to produce cotton using less water, chemicals and pesticides. This results in an improved financial situation and better living conditions for growers and their families. As well as more sustainable cotton in our clothes.
The benefits are many – and not only for the environment. BCI growers also accept a social responsibility. Among other things, the money the growers save by using less water, chemicals and fertilisers goes towards higher salaries for employees and schooling for children.
The Better Cotton Initiative has licensed over 1.6 million farmers in 23 countries. Together, these farmers produced 11.9 percent of the world’s cotton. By buying cotton products from KappAhl, you are supporting responsible cotton production through the Better Cotton Initiative.
Organic cotton inspected by third party
Sustainable cotton is good for our customers, the growers and the environment. It is grown without chemical pesticides or artificial fertilisers and contains no genetically modified (GMO) crops.
Organic cotton is checked by an independent third party. We approve certifications in accordance with the GOTS and OCS standards.
We have a wide range of organic garments – look for labels on the items. The cotton in Newbie, our popular collection for very little ones, is always 100 per cent organic.
2 questions for KappAhl's sustainability manager
Eva Kindgren de Boer, sustainability manager for production at KappAhl.
1. Why is it important to promote more sustainable cotton?
“Cotton farming requires enormous amounts of resources, but global populations are growing and in practice we have the same area on which to grow cotton now as we did 30 years ago. If we do nothing now, in 20-30 years’ time there won’t be enough cotton to go round. We just want to ensure that there will still be cotton in the future – and to help it to be grown in the best way.”
2. What improvements to BCI growers actually see in their everyday lives?
“An important aspect is the real sense of solidarity there now is in the towns. Growing with BCI principles gives a sense of security. The growers use less water and chemicals, for example by watering directly onto the plant instead of over the whole field. When using chemicals, they know how to handle them to give the least negative effect to the growers, his or her family and the environment. This has led to a reduction of birth defects in children.
When I was visiting one of the towns, I could really see their joy, which was great! They see that their children are healthy and can go to school.”