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Australia, US work together for sustainable cotton

Australia’s Cotton Research and Development Corporation and United State’s Cotton Incorporated are both members of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) that held its annual conference in Copenhagen, this May. Representatives from both countries are working to ensure that sustainability messages for Australian and US cotton are understood by SAC members, many of whom are Cotton Leads partners.

Brooke Summers (Cotton Australia) and Allan Williams (CRDC) also spoke at the Planet Textiles conference about Australia’s sustainability credentials including the industry’s R&D portfolio. The SAC offers members a number of tools to assess the sustainability and social merits of various components in the textile supply chain including the raw materials that go into products (including cotton) and the factories that manufacture garments.

The HIGG index is gaining traction as a tool that essentially gives a score to factories, raw materials and brands across a number of modules. This tool is being used to assess which materials end up in products, with the data based on life cycle assessments provided by member organisations including Cotton Incorporated.

Cotton Incorporated, funded by US growers of upland cotton and importers of cotton and cotton textile products, is the research and marketing company representing upland cotton. The program is designed and operated to improve the demand for and profitability of cotton.