Canopy’s recently unveiled 2023 ‘Hot Button Report’ has become a focal point in the fashion sector, shedding light on a definitive shift toward Next Gen production in MMCF (Man-Made Cellulosic Fiber). The report stands as the foremost fiber sourcing analysis tool, specifically addressing the nexus between fashion and forests. The Hot Button Report meticulously assesses the risk associated with MMCF producers tapping into high-carbon forests while highlighting advancements in Next Gen production. It incorporates crucial insights into chemical processing through its coverage of the Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC) initiative.
Good progress in 2023
One of the standout revelations is the notable progress made in 2023, with 54 per cent of global viscose supply earning the coveted ‘green shirt’ status. This signifies MMCF producers' commitment to utilizing the CanopyStyle Audit, a robust mechanism for verifying their sourcing practices and evaluating associated risks. The CanopyStyle initiative has 550 global brands as participants, collectively boasting of an annual revenue $1 trillion.
An encouraging trend highlighted in the report is the increased engagement of MMCF producers with Canopy, with an additional 29 per cent joining forces in 2023. Canopy says 89 per cent of MMCF producers globally have embraced the CanopyStyle Audit, marking a significant milestone in ensuring responsible and sustainable sourcing practices. Impressively, the top 20 MMCF producers, comprising 71 per cent of global production, are actively involved in this transformative initiative.
Since its inception in 2016, the Hot Button Report has served as an annual catalyst for driving continual improvement in sustainability within the fashion industry. It operates as a vital instrument for navigating and influencing a supply chain that was previously shrouded in ambiguity, offering a roadmap for positive change in the realms of environmental responsibility and ethical sourcing.
Green shirt rating
Producers receiving a green shirt rating are recognized for their proactive measures to eliminate the risk of sourcing rayon and viscose from endangered and ancient forests. This signifies the producer has undergone a thorough audit, confirming their low-risk status. The rating is determined by the number of buttons allocated to producers in the Hot Button Report, each button reflecting the producer's efforts to eradicate the use of ancient and endangered forests in their supply chain. The rating considers the producer's preference for textiles crafted from innovative fibers.
The rating’s primary goal is to spotlight producers who surpass basic requirements, demonstrating a commitment to eliminating materials derived from ancient and endangered forests. The rating is significant as more MMCF productions attain green shirt status, providing producers with a broader array of Next Gen options. This shift aligns with their efforts to achieve Scope 3 goals and adhere to the recently enacted EU Deforestation Regulations.
India’s Aditya Birla Group ranks No. 1
In this year's Hot Button Report, Aditya Birla Group took the top spot, followed by Lenzing AG, and Tangshan Sanyou/Xinxiang Chemical Fiber (Bailu) in third. Three more MMCF producers—Formosa, Nanjing Chemical Fibers, and Shandong Hongtaiding—earned a green shirt rating in 2023. Additionally, Yibin Grace and Acegreen achieved the prestigious dark green shirt status. The report foresees more producers reaching this level next year, highlighting their commitment to sustainability.
MMCF production is shifting, with most Canopy-engaged producers investing in Next Gen R&D. Commercial-scale projects are underway, showing promise in replacing millions of tons of forest fiber. Leading fashion companies like Inditex, Mara Hoffman, PVH, and H&M are championing Next Gen textiles, integrating them into their lines. Producers with commercial-scale Next Gen products receive recognition with a circular icon, symbolizing their contribution to a sustainable fashion economy.