Global Textile Companies Sign Up to Cotton LEADS℠
January 28, 2014

60+ brands partner with Cotton Australia, Cotton Incorporated and other US partners to recognize responsible cotton production

Just over two months after its launch, more than 60 textile companies have formally acknowledged the merits of Cotton LEADS™ cotton and now include it within their sustainable sourcing guidelines.

Cotton LEADS™ is a program that emphasizes the responsible growing practices of cotton growers in Australia and the United States.

The organisations to have signed up to Cotton LEADS™ are suppliers to some of the world’s most recognizable apparel brands, and include Fruit of the Loom; Brooks Brothers; Central Textiles; Tuscarora Yarns; Mount Vernon Mills; and the Esquel Group.

Cotton Australia CEO, Adam Kay, says the Cotton LEADS™ partners are very pleased with the swift addition of signatories to the program.

“The Cotton LEADS™ partners are very encouraged by the strong take-up of signatory companies to the program,” Mr Kay says. “The swift adoption of the program underlines the strong global demand for cotton that is recognized as responsibly produced.”

“With such a strong showing in a very short time we anticipate more companies and brands will sign on and specify Cotton LEADS™ cotton, which is very good news for cotton growers in Australia and the United States.”

Fruit of the Loom was one of the first companies to sign on to the Cotton LEADS™ program. Tony Pelaski, the brand’s Chief Operating Officer, says: “Fruit of the Loom continues to strive for the highest level of corporate responsibility in our supply chain. As a member of Cotton LEADS™, we are assuring consumers of our commitment to sustainability and traceability in the cotton we use in our products.”

Cotton LEADS™ is committed to continuous improvement in farm production practices, environmental stewardship and the dissemination of best practices information broadly throughout the world’s cotton producing countries. The Cotton LEADS™ program emphasizes the environmental gains achieved at a national level within the two current member nations, as well as the national oversight and national capabilities of the cotton industries in the US and Australia. Combined, Cotton LEADS™ cotton accounts for roughly 17% of global production. Cotton LEADS™ helps assure a ready supply of responsibly-grown cotton to a textile industry that is increasingly interested in sustainable and traceable production practices, as well as commitments to ongoing improvement.

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