Consumers want brand transparency finds major European survey

brett mathews | 21st November 2018

AMSTERDAM – The vast majority of consumers want more transparency from apparel brands and retailers claims new research.  80 per cent of 5,000 European consumers surveyed by Fashion Revolution said they think fashion brands should publish the factories used to manufacture their clothes, while two thirds would like fashion brands to tell them where the materials used in their products come from.

In one of the most significant surveys ever carried out on the issue, Fashion Revolution questioned 5,000 people aged 16-75 in the five largest European markets, including Germany, United Kingdom, France, Italy and Spain, to find out how supply chain transparency and sustainability impacts consumers’ purchasing decisions when shopping for clothing, accessories and shoes.

When buying clothes, more than one in three consumers surveyed said they consider social (38 per cent) and environmental impacts (37 per cent).

More people (39 per cent) said that buying clothes made by workers paid a fair, living wage was important than any other topic surveyed, including: environmental protection (37 per cent), safe working conditions (31 per cent), animal welfare (30 per cent), local production (10 per cent) and use of recycled materials (6 per cent).

The results also showed the majority of people think it is important for fashion brands to reduce their long-term impacts on the world by addressing global poverty (84 per cent), climate change (85 per cent), environmental protection (88 per cent) and gender inequality (77 per cent).

This survey was carried out as part of Trade Fair, Live Fair,’ a 3-year project funded by the European Commission that brings together 35 partners from the Fair Trade community across the EU to raise public awareness and contribute to achieving Goal 12.8 of the UN’s Sustainable Development framework: “ to ensure that, by 2030, people everywhere have the relevant information and awareness for sustainable development and lifestyles in harmony with nature.”

Sarah Ditty, Fashion Revolution policy director said: “The pace of change by the fashion industry simply isn’t moving fast enough, and we can see this reflected in consumer attitudes. People have an urgent, emotional desire to know more about how their clothes are made, and that they haven’t harmed the environment, the people who made them nor were tested on animals. And they want governments to hold brands and retailers to account to ensure this happens.”

Full survey here: https://bit.ly/2S6ExVp