When it comes to fashion, becoming a fully sustainable brand is a great challenge. The polluting nature of the production process and the high demands of consumers, ensure that sustainability now receives more attention than ever before. However, there’s still room for big improvements. Getting rid of fast fashion and putting sustainability first, forms an interesting challenge for all fashion brands. After we spoke to positive impact creator Kuyichi, denim brand G-Star is next. What positive impact can this originally Dutch denim brand make in this world? We asked the brand about her CSR activities and impact creation…
Just the product
As a brand, G-Star is known from its cutting-edge and raw denim styles. This focus on constantly reinventing denim is captured in G-Star’s philosophy that has always been ‘Just the Product’. In designing denim for the future, G-Star includes the responsibility for social and environmental impact. G-Star wants to continue making iconic products in the future and acknowledges the need to look into sustainable solutions that enable the brand to do so.
G-Star’s Corporate Responsibility manager tells us: “We are convinced that sustainability must not be ‘just a feature’, but must be integrated in business as a whole. That’s why G-Star sees sustainability as a condition for doing business”.
Sustainability must not be ‘just a feature’, but must be integrated in business as a whole
To achieve this broad integration, transparency plays an important role in how is dealt with CSR. G-Star sees that consumers demand more transparency. They want to know where a product is made and have the possibility to make informed choices. An example of how G-Star has become more transparent is the ‘where-is-it-made’ button in the online store to find out where the product that you like is made.
From supply chain to innovation
The denim brand is aware of the fact that in fashion, you are part of a larger whole. Throughout the whole chain, impact can be created. But where can you create the biggest impact as a fashion brand?
Our biggest impact on society and the environment comes from products and production processes
On product scale, G-Star is continuously working on innovative products with carefully considered materials. Since 2008, G-Star has innovative items in the collection that embrace sustainability. This resulted in the RAW Recycled, RAW Nettle and Raw Organic collection. After this, the focus expanded to using sustainable materials throughout the entire collection which made G-Star able to increase the share of sustainable materials within their products.
The separate campaign they developed, ‘RAW for the Oceans’, is the first consumer facing campaign, focused on sustainability and the problem of plastic pollution in our oceans. How did G-Star create impact with this? They communicated this serious subject in a positive and fun way, by using products that have a high relevancy and universality, like jeans.
Our ultimate goal is to make the entire production process for denim more sustainable
A sustainability process: never ‘done’
In monitoring the supply chain and intertwine innovation within their brand, G-Star can be found a positive impact creator. First, because it aims to maximize positive impact. Second, because G-Star is aware of the fact that positive impact creation is never ‘done’. The ultimate goal is to make the entire production process for denim more sustainable. On a practical scale, this means focusing on materials, but also on washes, dyes and the manufacturing process.
A process of positive impact creation is never ‘done’: it’s not only about your successes, but also about your challenges
Every brand that wants to develop her impact in a positive way faces challenges too. So far, G-Star hasn’t really bumped into roadblocks, but they know it’s about a process of continuous improvement. Roadblocks can be passed, but a process of positive impact creation is never ‘done’. With MADE-BY’s MODE tracker, G-Star keeps track of her progress to support her positive efforts. By means of measurement and communication, the year-on-year improvements get mapped and reported.
As positive impact creator ambassador, Rainbow Collections agrees that creating impact is a process. Impact is never done or perfect. But as long as brands go for it, we can all move forward towards a better tomorrow with lots of things to learn from each other. Being transparent is key, and that’s what G-Star likes to share with the world too. Consumers want to know the real story behind where a product’s made, giving them the possibility to make informed and conscious choices.
Just like our positive impact creators, we believe that impact creation is a process. Start with creating impact today, no matter on what scale – see it as a starting point. As long as you focus on converting challenges into something positive, and integrate this into the heart of your business, you’re heading towards change and making positive progress.denim, G-Star, innovation, positive impact, production chain, sustainability, sustainable fashion, transparency