Textile Exchange launches revamped Material Change Index tracking industry progress toward more sustainable materials sourcing

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The Material Change Index is the largest voluntary peer-to-peer comparison initiative in the textile industry and demonstrates a commitment to transparency and continuous improvement around materials sourcing strategies.

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“We congratulate all participating companies for voluntarily taking part, and we applaud the companies that emerged as MCI leaders.” said Liesl Truscott, Director of Materials Strategy at Textile Exchange.

Textile Exchange announces the launch of its annual Material Change Index.

With 170 companies participating, the Material Change Index (MCI) is the largest voluntary peer-to-peer comparison initiative in the textile industry. It tracks the apparel, footwear and home textile sector’s progress toward more sustainable materials sourcing, as well as alignment with global efforts like the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and the transition to a circular economy.

“We’ve been running a preferred materials benchmark for three years and felt it was time to ramp it up. There’s a greater urgency; resources are finite, and consumption contributes to climate change, among other serious impacts. The textile industry can play a huge role in the shift to a regenerative and circular use of materials — but we have to move fast and put the growing, extraction and recycling of materials center stage. Our ambition at Textile Exchange is to motivate and enable companies to progress towards the more sustainable use of materials,” said LaRhea Pepper, Managing Director at Textile Exchange.

The Material Change Index is a key component of Textile Exchange’s Corporate Fiber & Materials Benchmark (CFMB) program, which enables participating companies to measure, manage and integrate a preferred fiber and materials strategy into their business. By participating in the CFMB, companies demonstrate a commitment to transparency and continuous improvement around their materials sourcing strategy. In 2019, 85% of participating companies had a commitment to converting at least one of their key material categories to “100% more sustainable”. Additionally, 39% of materials used by participating companies were from more sustainable sources.

The MCI family of indices tracks progress across the following categories: Cotton, Polyester, Nylon, Manmade Cellulosics, Down, Wool, Material Circularity, and the SDGs. Companies that complete the full CFMB survey are eligible to be recognized on the overall MCI Leaderboard. In 2019, there were 74 companies eligible for the MCI, with 16 companies awarded “Level 4: Leader” status (listed in alphabetical order).

  • C&A AG
  • Coyuchi, Inc.
  • DECATHLON SA
  • EILEEN FISHER, Inc.
  • H&M Group
  • IKEA of Sweden AB
  • Levi Strauss & Co.
  • Loomstate, LLC
  • MUD Jeans International BV
  • Naturaline (Coop Switzerland)
  • NIKE, Inc.
  • Nudie Jeans Marketing AB
  • Patagonia
  • prAna
  • Stanley/Stella SA
  • Tchibo GmbH

“We congratulate all participating companies for voluntarily taking part, and we applaud the companies that emerged as MCI leaders. Although the benchmark survey takes time and resources to complete, participants tell us the exercise is well worth the effort. There’s much to learn from the results, as well as an enormous opportunity to accelerate progress through the virtuous circle of knowledge pooling. With our deep expertise and passion for the topic, Textile Exchange is perfectly positioned to create the framework for progress as well as measure, aggregate and report back on the textile industry’s outcomes and impacts,” said Liesl Truscott, Director of Materials Strategy at Textile Exchange.    

Future-fit for the new decade
In 2019, Textile Exchange worked with stakeholders to future-fit the benchmark for the next ten years. This resulted in:

  • Updated methodology and reporting framework. The Material Change Index methodology was updated in 2019 to provide a more holistic picture of company progress toward more sustainable materials sourcing. The program and processes were independently assessed by BSD Consulting using the ISEAL Benchmarking Guidelines and Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) principles.
  • Digital scorecards replaced PDF feedback reports. Participating companies receive confidential scorecards, which are now in interactive digital format. Scorecards provide simple and highly visual snapshots of company performance and comparative progress.
  • Media partnership with GreenBiz: To encourage continued upward progress, Textile Exchange has partnered with GreenBiz to publish the results and a series of articles educating textile industry professionals on how to improve their materials sourcing strategy for key materials, as well as cross-cutting topics like strategy integration, circularity and SDG alignment.

“Our mission at GreenBiz is to accelerate the transition to a clean economy, and we recognize the enormous contribution the apparel and textile industry can make. We are excited to partner with Textile Exchange on this important benchmark program, which taps into companies' zest for competition while at the same time supporting collaboration and systems thinking. The results launched today are only the beginning of our partnership and we look forward to further collaboration with Textile Exchange and its members,” said Joel Makower, Chairman and Executive Editor at GreenBiz Group.

The Material Change Index (MCI) is published in partnership with the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles and WRAP UK, with GreenBiz Group as its lead media partner. Funding support was generously provided by C&A and Tchibo. The MCI is proudly affiliated with the World Benchmarking Alliance and Textile Exchange is a supporting organization to the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action.

Our ambition is to be the driving force for urgent climate action on textile fiber and materials. By benchmarking the industry and providing actionable tools for improvement, Textile Exchange is pushing a race to the top. Join us.

About Textile Exchange
Textile Exchange is a global nonprofit that creates leaders in the sustainable fiber and materials industry. The organization manages and promotes a suite of six leading industry standards, as well as, collects and publishes critical industry data and insights that enable brands and retailers to measure, manage and track their use of preferred fiber and materials.

With more than 400 members representing leading brands, retailers and suppliers, Textile Exchange has, for years, been positively impacting climate through accelerating the use of preferred fibers across the global textile industry and is now making it an imperative goal through its 2030 Strategy: Climate+. Under the Climate+ strategic direction, Textile Exchange will be the driving force for urgent climate action with a goal of 35-45% reduced CO2 emissions from textile fiber and material production by 2030.

To learn more about Textile Exchange, visit: TextileExchange.org. Follow us on Twitter at @TextileExchange.

Find the Material Change Index results at http://mci.TextileExchange.org.

Media resources: https://textileexchange.org/2020-mci-media-kit/#

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Donna Worley
@TextileExchange
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