Textile Exchange has produced a new tool called the Material Change Index. This aims at pushing apparel and home furnishings companies further toward sustainability. It enables participating companies to measure, manage and integrate a preferred fiber and materials strategy into their business. The index was created in part through the voluntary participation of more than 170 companies. The MCI family of indices tracks progress across cotton, polyester, nylon, manmade cellulosics, down, wool, material circularity and the Sustainable Development Goals.
The index launch comes at a pivotal moment for the fashion industry, which has been under increased scrutiny for its environmental and social impacts. One reason is that the fashion industry’s sprawling supply chains stitch together a wide range of sectors and concerns, including agriculture, chemicals, energy, forestry, oil and gas, retail and transportation. And in each of those lies a range of extraction, energy, emissions and waste challenges, as well as a variety of social issues, from animal welfare to the rights of indigenous cultures.
Textile Exchange has been working for nearly two decades to bring visibility into the industry’s supply chain and along the way has taken on an increasingly broad portfolio — from cotton to additional materials, and from organic to other means of growing and producing sustainable textiles.