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MEMPHIS – The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol has welcomed the UK’s leading retailer, Tesco, as a member of the system that claims to bring quantifiable and verifiable goals and measurement to cotton production.

The Trust appears to be growing fast, proving a popular option for brands, retailers and other cotton sector stakeholders. Just last week, the Trust Protocol also welcomed Gildan Activewear and their portfolio of company-owned brands, including Gildan, Alstyle, American Apparel, and Comfort Colors, as members. Gildan is one of the world’s largest manufacturers of everyday basic apparel, and it is also one of the largest domestic consumers of U.S. cotton, which represents the majority of the fiber used in Gildan’s products.

Tesco announced it wants to continue to provide transparency throughout its clothing supply chain and this is a key reason for sourcing materials through the U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol for both its home and clothing ranges in store.

Dr. Gary Adams, president of the U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol said: “Tesco is committed to playing a leading role in sustainable solutions for consumers across the world/ UK, and we are proud to be supporting them in this ambition. Collaboration is key, as with each member that joins, we have greater resources to help provide tools and knowledge to not only help U.S. growers improve their sustainability practices but to also give more brands and retailers the supply chain confidence they need.”

The Trust Protocol is a new initiative which, it says, provides fashion brands and retailers with the critical assurances they need to show the cotton fibre element of their supply chain is more responsibly grown. It works by providing member brands such as Gap Inc., Gildan, Next and Byford access to the Protocol Credit Management System to validate consumption of cotton and associated credit; and to aggregate year-over-year data in six areas: water use, greenhouse gas emissions, energy use, soil carbon, soil loss, and land use efficiency.

Joe Little, head of technical & sustainability, Tesco said: “We want to offer our customers great quality affordable fashion while at the same time reducing our environmental impact. Our customers trust that we source and produce all of our products in a responsible and ethical way, and becoming a member of the U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol gives us access to more sustainably grown cotton. Working with the Trust Protocol will allow us to further our sustainability ambitions as we work towards our goal of 100 per cent sustainable cotton by 2025.”

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