The Global Perspective
Companies are increasingly recognising that “business as usual” needs to consider sustainability in sourcing practices, especially of naturally derived materials and ingredients. Although emphasis has been placed on labour rights and ethical trade issues for many years, we have seen concerted efforts to start looking beyond the factory gate to origins of the fibres used in garment and accessory production. Campaigns and concerns about the security of supply have forced companies to look at their wider portfolio of natural and animal derived fibres and put in place pans to tackle issues such as animal welfare, child labour and pesticide use.
Sustainability is characterised by complex and “messy” problems that have a multitude of interactions between all the different players and issues involved. Multi-Stakeholder Collaboration for Systemic change involves working with the complexity, to help people see the whole system, and to recognise that change will often be an unpredictable and surprising process.
Sustainable commodities can only be achieved if developing countries align their stakeholders behind a shared vision for the future of their commodity sectors and engage and commit all actors in effort to generate change.