Swedish retail brands Indiska, KappAhl and Lindex in partnership with more than 40 Indian textile and garment suppliers have decided to reduce the environmental impact and improved capacity of supply chains through a unique project for cleaner production.
The new project has saved 284 million litres of water and 402 tonnes of chemicals annually and is now being scaled up to include several Indian states and four other countries in the world. It involves more than 120 suppliers globally.
A training project set up by Indian-based Sustainable Water Resources (SWAR), a cooperation between the Swedish brands Indiska, KappAhl and Lindex and their Indian suppliers, along with the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI), Sida and India-based consultant cKinetics claims to have reduced the environmental impact of textile supply chains in India through improved resource efficiency.
SWAR was co-financed by the brands and Sida, in a publicâ€“private partnership that linked business and international development goals.
More than 40 factories participated in the project, which is claimed to have contributed to saving 284 million litres of water and 402 tonnes of chemicals every year. The factories were also able to save an average of 3 percent of their energy cost and 3 percent of their operational costs.
The project trained more than 13,000 factory workers and managers in the past two years.
Mr Ravinder Hand from garment manufacturer Radnik, which has taken part in the project said that they are now all aware of how important it is to save water, energy and chemicals, which is helpful in cutting factory costs. Building capacity and educating at every level in the garment industry needs to be an ongoing process.
The Indian textile industry contributes with three per cent to Indiaâ€™s GDP and employs more than 45 million people. The industry is one of the largest industrial water polluters in India, and is facing serious growth limitations due to increasing freshwater shortage.
In response, more than half of the participating factories will continue to work on their own, continuously communicating their development to their clients in Sweden. Others have joined a network created by SIWI and the three fashion brands for continuing progress.
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