UK-based supermarket chain, Lidl, has announced that it would switch all of its cotton employee uniforms to Fairtrade cotton, making it the first UK retailer to do so.
The uniform will be worn by the retailer's 22,000 shop associates and will be rolled out across all stores with a pledge to acquire 330,000 shirts, trousers, polo tops, and chinos.
This translates to 175 metric tonnes of Fairtrade certified cotton, which will support Indian farmers.
Amali Bunter, Lidl GB Head of Responsible Sourcing and Ethical Trade, said that they're happy to be the first UK retailer to convert all of their store team uniforms to Fairtrade cotton, opening up a valuable market for Fairtrade cotton farmers throughout the world.
Bunter added that not only will this change benefit the farmers who grow the cotton used in their uniforms, but it will also mean that their retail employees will be able to wear uniforms made from high-quality, sustainably sourced fabric that they can be proud of. This new initiative builds on Lidl GB's long-standing commitment to Fairtrade, which sees the retailer sell over 100 different types of Fairtrade-certified products each year.
Fairtrade works with cotton farmers to decrease or eliminate the use of agrochemicals while also assisting them in adapting to changing climate patterns. Rain-fed fairtrade cotton farms reduce the region's water footprint.
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