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EFF SOURCE Fashion business success without compromise

28 July 2012

Ethical Mandate

Contributor Ethical Fashion Forum

SOURCE members which are listed in the Fashion Brand and Sourcing Directories on the SOURCE Database, and all businesses exhibiting in SOURCE Brand Preview or SOURCE Expo, are reviewed against our ETHICAL MANDATE.

For more details on how listed businesses are reviewed, click here.


Listed members are required to incorporate minimum labour standards in business, production and sourcing practices (relating to working hours, living wage, freedom of association and the right to collective bargaining, use of contract labour, child labour, forced labour, discrimination, harassment, health & safety – as referenced in national and international law, and for example by the Ethical Trading Initiative Base Code).


Listed members are requested to provide evidence of the added value their processes or suppliers offer to communities and to the environment. This is relevant at every stage in the supply chain. For example:

  • Schemes for worker engagement with decision making
  • Programmes of worker training and capacity building
  • Programmes of support for local communities including housing, facilities, education and healthcare
  • Not for profit initiatives or schemes with a portion of profits dedicated to adding value in social and environmental terms
  • Working to fair trade criteria as defined by WFTO (World Fair Trade Organisation) and FLO
  • Supporting the development of local value chains which strengthen local and national economies
  • Building on traditional and cultural skills
  • Supporting and creating opportunities for vulnerable groups


Listed members are required to have an environmental policy in place for production, sourcing, and business practices. This should include reference to energy use and waste, recycling, water and chemical use.

Fashion brands and suppliers of fabrics and components are required to work in accordance with at least one of the criteria listed below, and to provide evidence of this:

  • Organic sourcing
  • Recycling
  • Sustainable sourcing ( eg eco fabrics, or materials which safeguard indigenous forests such as bark cloth)
  • Social impact (see section 2 above)

Factories and production units should have an environmental policy and for eco factories, details to be made available of the measures taken to secure eco-factory status, including policies on waste, recycling, water and energy use and effluent.


Listed members should provide evidence of progressive practices towards sustainability. There may be good reasons why a certain standard or certification has not been attained – these should be communicated along with the company’s strategy towards continually improved social and environmental standards.


Listed members are expected to conduct their business in an honest and transparent manner, ensuring that accurate information is available to visitors with regards to social and environmental standards. If certain standards / certification are not yet held, the reasons should be clearly stated and qualified.


Listed members are expected to commit to working to the highest quality standards in both supply and manufacture.

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