Support a Farmer with the Textile Exchange 2011 Limited Edition T-shirt

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Textile Exchange (formerly Organic Exchange) has partnered with ethical clothing leaders Mantis World and Gossypium to produce its first limited-edition T-shirt collection for men, women, and children.

We think the organic cotton T-shirt is a perfect way to connect our cause, raise awareness from field to street, and include consumers in directly supporting organic cotton agricul-ture.

Textile Exchange (formerly Organic Exchange) has partnered with ethical clothing leaders Mantis World and Gossypium to produce its first limited-edition T-shirt collection for men, women, and children. Funds raised from the purchase of this t-shirt will help provide funding for farmers to attend the 2011 Textile Exchange Global Conference in Barcelona this September.

“We think the organic cotton T-shirt is a perfect way to connect our cause, raise awareness from field to street, and include consumers in directly supporting organic cotton agricul-ture,” said Liesl Truscott, Farm Engagement Director, Textile Exchange.

Textile Exchange works to improve the lives of cotton farmers by supporting the expansion of organic cotton production and markets. But the non-profit has to find the funds to finance farmers’ travel and accommodation, to enable farmers’ face-to-face participation in global networking and business-building opportunities.

“We know coming to our conferences can take farmers to a completely new level of connec-tion to market and business awareness. With the proceeds from our first T-shirt project, we hope to get at least 10 small-scale farmers from Africa, India, and Latin America to Barcelona this year,” said Truscott.

The largest global meeting of textile brands and retailers with an increasing number of manufacturers, the Textile Exchange annual conference provides a fantastic opportunity for people within the Industry to meet, get to know each other, and transact business, as well as learn about more sustainable textile products and processes. This opportunity to connect has resulted in many long-term business relationships.

By making farmers a part of the stakeholder discussions and allowing them to see for them-selves where their organic fiber ends up, future trade relations are improved and mutual understanding and respect is built between growers and retailers.

T-shirt Partnership Production
The Support a Farmer fundraising T-shirt is the result of an innovative collaboration of the textile supply chain and friends in the industry.

The beautiful and original artwork was designed by Gossypium, the independent, ethical clothing brand based in Lewes, United Kingdom. The luxurious, Global Organic Textile Stan-dard-certified organic T-shirt was ethically produced by Mantis World in their award-winning Tanzania factory from locally grown organic cotton, ensuring that the local economy gets the most value.

The limited edition T-shirt comes in sizes for men, women and children, with a special dis-count for students. To view the T-shirts beautifully captured ‘in action’ in a small organic al-lotment in Bath, United Kingdom by photographer Calvin Talbot. To directly purchase your Love. Organic Cotton. T-shirt visit http://www.gossypium.co.uk/catalog/tee-t-shirt-c-248/.    

Organic cotton farming – the facts
Most of the world’s cotton producers live in developing countries and farm less than 2 hec-tares of land. The overuse and misuse of pesticides and fertilizers common in conventional agriculture has harmful effects on land, water, biodiversity and people’s health. Vulnerable farming communities and an unfair global market means the world’s poor small-scale cotton farmers tend to remain poor; trapped in debt or forced to migrate to (often) overcrowded cities.

Organic cotton helps farmers to invest in their own communities instead of abandoning them. Organic is not simply a question of getting rid of pesticides. For organic farmers to achieve the best results they need the knowledge, skills, and trade opportunities to run suc-cessful businesses and strong farming systems that benefit the land, their families, and their future.

ABOUT TEXTILE EXCHANGE
Founded in 2002, Textile Exchange (formerly Organic Exchange) facilitates expansion of the global organic cotton and sustainable fiber supply and marketplace by working closely with the entire value chain, from farmers and textile suppliers to retailers and consumers. Textile Exchange has hosted numerous conferences and trainings in supply chain centers around the world, including Brazil, China, Germany, India, Peru, Portugal, South Africa, Sweden, Thailand, The Netherlands, Turkey, Uganda, the United Kingdom, and the United States. Visit TextileExchange.org for more information.

For more information on the benefits of organic cotton agriculture visit the Textile Exchange Farm Hub directly at http://www.TextileExchange.org/FarmHub.

Media Contacts:
USA and all inquiries about Textile Exchange
Heather Hocker
Email: Heather(at)TextileExchange(dot)org
Phone: +1.806.787.0948

In Europe and the UK             
Liesl Truscott                 
Email: liesl(at)textileexchange(dot)org
Phone: +44 (0)7810 592200

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Heather Hocker
Textile Exchange
(806) 787-0948
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