Fashion ishigh input, short use, frontline of consumerism Bad ethical, environmental and carbon reputation
Suits vs child labour? Not just high street fashion: Business clothing too Where did your suit come from? Bad model
Solution: Rapanui - change whole thing. Est. 2008 by two brothers: graduates of Renewable Energy and Business. ‘if you can’t find a job, make one’ approach. It’s not that people don’t care (about sustainability, it’s just they don’t know) – make eco cool, get people on board. What if Bowie was an ecowarrior?
Organic / eco textiles Ethical accreditation Low carbon supply chain Easy bit. Not about the product – get thinking, take more responsibility for whole life cycle… It’s about demand and supply: we need consumer-led change
Engagement fun and interesting. Offering full transparency on our key lines, from seed to shop – no PR disaster
Communication, on their terms. Open source contribution. No profit. Takes all the information about the sustainability of the clothing and presents it in an easy-to-use eco-label. (EU)
Work for no profit? Or just different rewards: Accolades, awards – reputation, value PR. National Features: Advertising spend so far: £0Transparency, eco product = Very loyal customers Prices: no different Outcomes: business success (300% YOY)
Traceability & Ecolabelling: engaging consumers with the supply chain, inform, inspire: change Sustainability transcends clothing: Rapanui Roast Coffee Retail outlet on the Isle of Wight Profit &growth (sustainability in business works). Pattern: good sustainability aligns with economies, not compromise.
£200 each…. Really 1 box of t-shirts, organic growth, now a fast growing SME (~10 employees, 300% Y.O.Y.) – it took a while… Focus on youth employment, IT, innovation. Reduced carbon by around 80% at product level (Carbon Trust study) Wind power wholesale PPA (India), RE supplier for offices and warehouse (Good Energy) plus organic co2 – snowball. If two unemployed graduates in a shed can do it… Attitude: Most businesses use sustainability as a vehicle to make money. We think of money as a vehicle to make sustainability. From day one, we’ve been a wind turbine development company by proxy.
Not static, open to change Product & process weren’t perfect Not 1 100% change. 100 1% changes. Little add ons / replacements for our business
Empower people from our business? Or empower businesses to empower their people.... There’s more to clothing than fashion. There’s more to carbon than electricity. Staffwear: A small change, a big difference: Promotional / staff clothing can be cheap & nasty. 80% carbon reduction (product level) – low hanging fruit. We set up to make t-shirts, polos, staff uniforms for other companies in sustainable supply chain.
BESPOKE B2B CLOTHING SUPPLY Measurable carbon reduction Traceable (no exposes!) PR points. Feels great: Bowie factor: If they engage, will they behave differently? Turn off your lights?Are sustainable staff the 21st Century BMS? Wear what you believe: sustainable clothing = sustainable people.