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Fair Wear, ETI publicly disclose their Better Buying reports

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2022-04-14 12:18:41 – Netherlands

Fair Wear and the Ethical Trading Initiative (ETI) have become the first multi-stakeholder initiatives to publish their full Better Buying Partnership Index (BBPI) reports in order to promote transparency in the industry's purchasing practices.

Fair Wear and ETI are the first Multi-Stakeholder Initiatives (MSIs) to release complete BBPI reports, with scores generated based on supplier feedback on MSI member brands. The projects expect that by releasing their BBPI reports, the garment and footwear sector would change faster.

The reports are linked to The Industry We Want (TIWW) Purchasing Practices indicator, a multi-stakeholder project in the garment and footwear industry. The apparel industry tool tracks progress on pay disparities, purchasing practices, and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in the garment and footwear industry. Supplier input on MSI member brands is used to provide detailed scoring for each MSI against 12 key behaviors.

Margreet Vrieling, associate director of Fair Wear said that as convenors of The Industry We Want, they see an exciting opportunity: MSIs and responsible business conduct platforms can assess their score against their Industry Dashboard. They learn more about the prospects for advancing toward responsible purchasing practices by sharing their reports.

The reports show that both ETI and Fair Wear scored over 70% for 'fair financial practises' (ETI: 70.6%, Fair Wear: 77.8%) and over 90% for ‘business dealings free from corruption and bribery’ (ETI: 92,9% and Fair Wear: 94,4%). Communication was also very good among ETI and Fair Wear member brands (ETI: 70,6% and Fair Wear 86,1% ).

Peter McAllister, director of ETI, said that they’re glad to see reports of good behavior among ETI brands when it comes to purchasing procedures. Engaged suppliers have played a critical role in delivering this feedback in the first year of this effort. ETI hopes to expand the survey's scope in the future so that it can provide a more accurate picture of industry advancement year after year. The more suppliers they hear from, the clearer a picture of industry performance these scores will provide.

ETI and Fair Wear's Better Buying Partnership Index reports include detailed scoring for each of the Partnership Index's 12 main behaviors. These fresh insights were developed by combining supplier feedback from ETI and Fair Wear member businesses. On each problem, suppliers can evaluate member brand customers as True Partners, Collaborators, or Detractors.

ETI outperforms the industry by 8 points, with a higher percentage of True Partners (63%) than the industry average (56%). Looking at the breakdown in more detail, ETI's best performance lies in: Absence of corruption and bribery (92,9%), Good communication (70,6%), Fair financial practices (70,6%), and Stable business with Buyers (60%).

With 73% of brands obtaining True Partner marks, Fair Wear earns 28 points higher than the industry average of 39. Looking at the Fair Wear breakdown in more detail, it's clear that Fair Wear member brands are behaving well in all categories. The areas where Fair Wear shines the brightest are: Absence of corruption and bribery (94,4%), Good communication (86,1%), Stable business with Buyers (80,6%), and Fair financial practices (77,8%).

Suppliers to both ETI and Fair Wear member brands said there was potential for improvement, and purchasers could improve practices such as product and process innovation, environmental performance, and operational efficiency, among other things.

Keren Pybus, CEO and co-founder Ethical Apparel Africa, said that he is thrilled to see both Fair Wear and ETI encouraging disclosure and transparency on purchasing procedures, and wants to see other actors in the industry follow their lead. This is an important step toward improving working conditions and having a good impact on the sector and those who work in it since it demonstrates what equitable partnerships look like and how they may be supported.

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