Tapestry, a New York-based house of luxury accessories and lifestyle brands like Coach, Kate Spade, and Stuart Weitzman, has announced a $3 million philanthropic grant to the World Wildlife Fund (WWF). The Tapestry Foundation is dedicated to advancing equity and opportunity through social and environmental initiatives.
This award will be used to create an innovative system to improve the traceability of the leather value chain in Brazil, ensuring the industry's long-term viability. According to a news statement from Tapestry, this partnership is the most recent move in the company's ongoing efforts to foster a responsible supply chain that other industries may replicate.
Tapestry and WWF will work together to build a coalition of organizations committed to these critical traceability projects. The organizations plan to meet with leaders from other industries in the coming months to form a complete network to handle this complicated topic with the necessary investment, experience, breadth, and scale.
Tapestry's commitment to reducing its impact on natural resources by sponsoring biodiversity programs in the areas where it operates is reflected in this release. Tapestry also announced a new collaboration with the Savory Institute's Land to Market Program, the first verified sourcing solution for regenerative agriculture, earlier this year. Tapestry aims to improve biodiversity and drive a reduction of carbon emissions by using regenerative raw materials that have a net positive impact on the environment.
The program's purpose is to accelerate the creation of a standard to certify deforestation and conversion-free (DCF) leather from Brazil in order to counteract deforestation in the Amazon and Cerrado biomes linked to cattle-raising. According to Tapestry, other components of the award will go toward replanting efforts in the biomes' most at-risk places, as well as collaboration with on-the-ground community partners to address the immediate concerns that deforestation and climate change bring to local, vulnerable populations.
Joanne Crevoiserat, chief executive officer of Tapestry, said that as a global leader in premium leather goods, they have invested in leather traceability and will continue to do so to build on the success that has already been accomplished. They reiterate their commitment to addressing climate change through long-term sustainable solutions while also taking immediate action through reforestation programs, thanks to this donation from the Tapestry Foundation. In addition, they are asking other companies, both within and beyond their sector, to join them in these initiatives.
Anne Gates, chair of the board of Tapestry and member of the board of directors, of the Tapestry Foundation, said that the Tapestry Foundation was established to push the boundaries of what is possible by investing in ambitious, community-based solutions that support social and environmental programs that promote access and opportunity. Their partnership with WWF is an example of the collaboration required to address the impact of climate change, as well as the power of committing to solutions that have a meaningful impact across many industries.
Mauricio Bauer, WWF senior director, beef and leather supply chain, said that they believe that the leather industry can and must develop a science-based, data-driven certification system that goes beyond the current practices. This program will collaborate with government agencies and other market participants to develop a system that improves traceability and establishes a clear chain of custody. The Tapestry Foundation's significant commitment will aid the industry in collaborating to gather needed research and develop a standard that benefits both the environment and local communities.
David Wright, senior director, materials development and planning, Tapestry, said that WWF has been a long-time partner of theirs, and they have a long-standing relationship with the Leather Working Group. They've also teamed up with WWF, the National Wildlife Federation, and the University of Wisconsin to map and trace the leather supply chain from farm to finished product. They quickly realized they shared a vision as they began to consider what else they could achieve. They can strengthen leather value chains in general and help to restore biodiversity in climate-vulnerable places of the world if they work together with their regenerative agriculture efforts.
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