Just two years after Greenpeace challenged the apparel industry for unchecked toxic waste, the Rana Plaza collapse in 2013 was a tragic wake-up call for the industry’s treatment of workers. Since then, Schaffer&Combs has supported the sector’s efforts to dramatically change practices, and generate credible environmental and social improvements. Two of our recent projects are particularly strong indicators of industry progress, the results of which have garnered media attention:
With support from Schaffer&Combs, Saitex has become the only B Certified apparel manufacturer headquartered in Asia. Located at the epicenter of the $2 trillion apparel industry, Saitex, a denim manufacturer employing more than 4,000 people, has set a new precedent that sustainable and regenerative business practices are achievable in large scale manufacturing. While B Corp certification is no small effort for a manufacturer producing millions of garments per year, Schaffer&Combs helped navigate the process and will remain thought partners for the journey ahead.
Schaffer&Combs has supported Sustainable Apparel Coalition with strategy, governance, and innovation for several years. In 2018, with thousands of users relying on the Higg Index, SAC’s sustainability performance measurement tool, it became clear that industry-level impact would require markedly enhanced resourcing for technology. Collaborating with SAC’s CEO, Jason Kibbey, S&C developed the business case, strategy, and organizational structure to spin off and capitalize Higg Co. Higg Co is a public benefit company, backed by impact investors, that will secure the Higg Index as the central sustainability measurement tool for the apparel industry and other major consumer goods supply chains.