patagonia raises the bar on transparency
Patagonia has long been a sustainability leader, championing a wide range of schemes to reduce waste, recycle and repurpose. Famously their 2011 Common Threads Partnership ad campaign asked consumers 'not to buy their products' in a bid to make people stop and think carefully about a purchase to avoid over-shopping and subsequent waste.
The company has recently launched a tool called Footprint Chronicles which allows customers and stakeholders to learn more about the company's global supply chain. Footprint Chronicles is an interactive map that allows users to click on suppliers and individual factories to see a snapshot of how many workers are employed, the gender ratio and information on which items are produced.
Patagonia hopes to continue adding supplier information to the map and to link it to their on-line shopping site to empower shoppers to make decisions based on ethical and environmental criteria.
image courtesy of patagonia
Big brands are increasingly claiming to be socially and environmentally responsible but going forward it is up to companies to demonstrate their transparency. A greater understanding of global business and access to social media is making consumers re-think their relationships with brands and the winners will be those who can show a clear intention to treat their workers, suppliers and the environment with respect.