In our last sustainability update, we discussed our plans to action our sustainability commitments across four areas: Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Product, Packaging and Supply Chain.
Since then, we have advanced our initiatives and we are ready to give an update on the progress we have made.
Greenhouse Gas Emissions
We have finalized our Greenhouse Gas Emissions inventory. Adopting the methodology established by the Greenhouse Gas Protocol, we have estimated our emissions across the ZIMMERMANN operations and value chain for the financial year 2020. This is our baseline, which we will use to monitor the progress we make over time in reducing our emissions.
Upon completing this important milestone, we have committed to set a science-based target through the Science Based Targets initiative (SBTi). SBTi drives ambitious climate action in the private sector by enabling companies to set science-based emissions reduction targets.
In addition, our comprehensive carbon reduction strategy is under development and will launch in October.
The details of our Greenhouse Gas Inventory will be shared in our Sustainability Report that is due to be published in December.
We are on track to achieve our target to increase the use of Better Cotton in our products and reach 50% by the end of 2021.
In parallel, our fibre-to-fibre recycling pilot initiatives are progressing and to date, we have been able to repurpose approximately 8% of surplus IP fabrics, and we aim to continue to increase that percentage over time.
In our last update, we mentioned the imminent launch of an Animal Welfare Policy and a Raw Materials Sourcing Policy to guide our designers in sourcing materials with a lower environmental impact. These have been completed and we are currently planning a training series for our production and design teams which will closely detail the environmental impact of raw materials and impact reduction opportunities.
Since our last update, we continued to phase out non-recycled polyethylene (PE) bags used to protect garments during shipping, which were replaced with 100% recycled PE. We have also decreased the bag thickness to reduce the amount of material used.
In parallel, we are looking into broadening the opportunities to divert polyethylene bags from landfill once they reach their end of life in store.
We are planning to implement a PE bag recycling service in those stores that, due to their location, are not currently able to recycle this material. We will provide further updates on this in the coming months.
In our last update we mentioned our plan to invest in training our suppliers on ZIMMERMANN’s priorities regarding social and environmental topics. In June 2021, we launched a training programme for our tier 1 and tier 2 suppliers to build dialogue around human and labour rights, health & safety, and environmental stewardship.
We followed-up with a series of workshops for our tier 2 production sites addressing some of the challenges they are facing in meeting our compliance requirement in relation to wage, working hours and health & safety. Twenty tier 2 sites attended the workshops with representatives from management, health & safety, and workers committees.
The sessions were well received, and we are already seeing some positive outcomes in terms of increased supplier engagement and commitment to improving labour standards. We look forward to sharing further updates on this programme as we continue to work with our suppliers on social and environmental topics.