Responsibly Sourced Cotton
When we say responsibly sourced cotton at Ted we are referring to cotton that comes from more sustainable and responsible sources. This means the water and chemical use is reduced from farm to manufacture and the farmers benefit from improved working conditions. Responsible cotton includes organic cotton, recycled cotton or cotton sourced as part of the Better Cotton Initiative.
Better Cotton Initiative
The aim of Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) is to make global cotton production better for the people who produce it, better for the environment and better for the future of the cotton industry. Through education and training, farmers learn more about sustainable production methods, helping them to reduce their environmental impact, use less water and fewer harmful pesticides, and increase their yields and profits.
Better Cotton is not physically traceable to the end product. However, BCI Farmers benefit from the demand for Better Cotton in equivalent volumes to those we source.
Unlike conventional cotton, the organic cotton farming process does not use synthetic pesticides, insecticides, fertilizers or GMO crops. The crops are predominantly rain fed too, which means the negative environmental impacts of growing cotton are minimized.
Recycled cotton can either be sourced from pre-consumer or post-consumer textile waste. By using recycled cotton, we’re able to eliminate the farming, harvesting and ginning processes. In turn, this helps to reduce the use of raw materials, water, chemicals and energy.
Alternatives to Viscose & Lyocell
Conventional viscose and lyocell are made with wood pulp, which has been linked to deforestation. The pulp is treated with solvents and therefore has associations with chemical pollution. By choosing alternative fibres sourced from sustainably managed forests (e.g. FSC certified) and processed in more sustainable way, these impacts can be reduced and eliminated.
Leather Working Group Tanneries
The Leather Working Group (LWG) is the leather industry’s most acknowledged environmental standard. We joined as a brand member in 2020 to aid the mapping of every tannery in the world, through the LWG Environmental Audit Protocol. The LWG is a multi-stakeholder initiative involving brands, suppliers, manufacturers and NGOs around the world.
Their audit protocol assesses the environmental compliance and performance capabilities of tanners, giving LWG the information it needs to promote sustainable environmental business practices in the leather industry. 26% of our leather now comes from LWG-certified tanneries, putting us on track to meet our 100% target by 2025.
Recycled Polyester & Nylon
Virgin polyester and polyamide (aka nylon) are made from crude oil which is a limited resource. Large amounts of energy and water are required to convert crude oil into a synthetic fibre. By using recycled alternatives, the raw materials and energy needed to produce them are reduced. Recycled Polyester and nylon are made from plastic waste, most commonly water bottles. The plastic waste is cleaned, crushed and melted to then be spun into recycled polyester and nylon yarn. This process uses less energy and helps stop plastic waste from ending up in landfills.
Wool is an important material to Ted so it’s important we source it as responsibly as possible. Responsible means that at farm stage the animal welfare of the sheep has been respected and the land where the sheep graze has been effectively managed. Less chemicals and energy are used in the farming and production of responsible wool compared to regular wool. Responsible Wool at Ted includes preferred options of organic wool, recycled wool or mulesing free wool.
Mulesing Free Wool
Mulesing is a cruel practice that can still take place in the farming of sheep to prevent flystrike, mulesing free wool ensures this practice has not taken place and the health of the sheep has been protected. Instead of carrying out mulesing the farmers take a progressive approach to farming and land management as a prevention. At Ted we are working with our suppliers to phase out the practice of mulesing in our collections.
Wool can be certified as organic if the sheep are farmed in humane conditions and not exposed to synthetic chemicals used on the land. With organic wool, the process of turning fleece into yarn uses fewer chemicals than conventional wool, meaning the overall environmental impact is decreased.
Wool production requires land for grazing sheep, as well as energy, water and chemicals to convert the wool into a finished and useable fibre. By using wool waste collected from factories or woolly jumpers at the end of a products life, we can eliminate these processes and minimise the environmental impact along the way.
We know that the responsibility doesn’t stop with the raw materials that make our products; it extends into all aspects of the products life cycle and includes the manufacturing processes too.
We keep a close eye on how our products are produced, working with our suppliers to reduce the impact from dying, printing, tanning and washing. Rethinking our manufacturing processes can also help reduce our carbon, water and chemical impact. One way we do this is by using digital printing instead of other methods of printing. Digital printing creates beautifully vivid images and uses less water and ink to do so.