Apparel & Footwear Ecology Question 1

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Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 5% of its volume?

  • Dutch version: Maakt het merk (bedrijf) voor meer dan 5% gebruik van ruwe materialen met een duidelijke 'milieuvoorkeur'?
  • German version: Verarbeitet der Markenhersteller mindestens zu 5% umweltfreundliche Materialien für das gesamte Produktionsvolumen der Marke?


This question relates to aspect AF20 in the Reporting Guidelines & Apparel and Footwear Sector Supplement of the Global Reporting Initiative.

To define what a ‘preferred’ raw material is, we refer primarily to categories A and B of the ‘Environmental Benchmark Fibers’ as published by MADE-BY, see page 6 and/or details in ranking guidelines below.

Ranking guidelines

A ‘Yes’ goes to companies that use ‘preferred materials’ for 5% or more of the total volume (in pieces or weight).

‘Preferred materials’ are acknowledged as any of the following:

  • All named materials in categories A and B of the Sustainable Yarn benchmark report from MADE-BY, namely: recycled cotton, recycled nylon6, recycled polyester, organic hemp, organic flax (linen), Tencel® (a lyocell product), organic cotton and organic ‘in conversion’ cotton.
  • FLO certified Fair Trade cotton and the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) are both recognized as preferred materials since they include restrictions on synthetic pesticides and fertilizers, as well as water saving techniques. “Cotton Made in Africa” is also acknowledged because NGO’s like WWF are in the board of trustees and are co-responsible for the integrity and credibility of the initiative.
  • The use of materials made from recycled products such as PET bottles, used tires, and other post-consumer materials. FSC certified rubber is included in this category

When a company uses mainly one material for its products, numbers on the use of only this specific material are considered as 'good enough' for this question.

Answering guidelines


  • [Brand] uses [..]% of [… (e.g. organic cotton)].


  • [Brand] uses only [..]% of [… (e.g. organic cotton].


  • [Brand] has a [...] collection made from (e.g. organic cotton), but it is not clear what percentage of the total volume this represents.
  • [Brand] does not communicate any information on an environmental policy on its website. Sustainability information should be easily accessible for consumers to make responsible choices.