Category Archives: Fairtrade Clothing

Ethical Uniform in 2021

Over the last two years, particularly through the pandemic, there has been an uplift in the demand for ethical uniform and also an increase in the ranges that are on offer from suppliers. 

Fairtrade organic polo shirts with buttons made from waste cotton

After the first lockdown, Fairtrade organic products sales dramatically grew, this was followed by a demand for British manufactured goods.  We believe this was driven by a number of factors.

  • Lockdowns prompted people to look to buy from their local businesses and manufacturers and gave them time to engage with their local community. 
  • The environmental crisis which has recently come to the forefront due to the increase in natural disasters which affect real people and the huge uprising of extinction rebellion just before the Coronavirus outbreak. 
  • The implementation of Brexit which has caused people to look locally for suppliers to avoid import duties and taxes.

During this period suppliers have been launching new ranges which, some of them are making their standard products organic, WRAP certified. Then there are whole new specialised products such as hi vis jackets and hi vis polo shirts, performance sports t-shirts, soft shell jackets and fleece jackets made from recycled polyester.

These products are completely new to market and give the opportunity for companies who need safety or specialist work wear, to make ethical choices which were not possible before.

For more information please call 01908 511051 or email sales@cottonroots.co.uk

Your Brand

Over the past few months the world has been turned upside down in a way that we have never seen before in our lifetime.  During this time the business world has seen winners and losers and will continue to do so over the coming years. 

At Impact Trading and Cotton Roots we have seen this as a time for change and reflection.  It has helped us look at new opportunities and ways to grow and one thing that is definitely clear is that British and ethical manufacturing is becoming more and more important to our customers. 

This has paved the way for us to help new ethically led fashion brands start up in an easy and cost effective way by introducing the ‘Your Brand’ section to our Cotton Roots website. 

A catalogue of organic cotton and recycled fabric unbranded stock garments that can be branded with the customer’s own label, embroidery and print

Each garment is priced to include the professional sewing in of a label, this can either be supplied by us or by the customer.  They can then opt to add on embroidery or print to customise the garment. Orders in the ‘My Brand’ range can start from as little as 50 mixed garments which makes it a low cost start up investment.

If you would like to browse the range of ethical clothing in the range please visit our website, if you would like more information or a quote please contact us on 01908 511051 or email emily@cottonroots.co.uk.

Let Fairtrade Fortnight inspire you to make the change

As the world becomes increasingly aware of the ethical and environmental impacts of low quality low cost clothing, more and more businesses and organisations are turning towards Fairtrade, organic and recycled options. 

At Impact Trading and Cotton Roots we have noticed a significant move towards this recently and the great news is that the increased demand has meant that there has been a sharp rise in products available with regards to garment ranges and colours. In the next month we will be adding a range of new products including recycled fleeces, softshells, performance tops and jackets. We are also expanding our range of organic and vegan clothing.

Fairtrade organic polo shirts come in men’s and ladies in a wide range of colours. Click here to see the range

This Fairtrade Fortnight which runs from the 24th February to 8th March 2020, we are hoping that more companies will start to consider the move towards ethical and sustainable options for their future uniform and work wear solutions.

To find out more please visit our website www.cottonroots.co.uk or call us on 01908 511051

Feel Good Accessories

At Impact Trading and Cotton Roots we have a huge range of eco-friendly, Fairtrade, sustainable and recycled clothing which organisations and businesses buy from us and often brand.  As well as clothing we also offer a range of accessories which have ethical certifications. 

Recycled caps and bags which are made from organic or Fairtrade cotton. We also have options for hat, scarfs and bath towels, which come in Fairtrade and organic options. Lanyards made from 100% bamboo and dyed with water-based inks which are comfortable, strong, durable and naturally antibacterial.

All these items can be branded with print or embroidery to fit nicely in to your organisation or business as well as giving you the feel good factor.

For more information and quotes on these please contact us at sales@cottonroots.co.uk

A Sweetener for You

Our new organic, Fairtrade clothing is a brilliant addition to our ethical range and we wanted to tell you more about it’s story. 

Fairtrade Organic T Shirts available from www.cottonroots.co.uk

Cotton is grown in hot countries such as India and China and is susceptible to a wide range of insect pests, these are usually controlled with a range of chemical pesticides.

Our organic cotton clothing has a whole new approach to this problem.  The farmers spray the cotton with a sugar water solution which attracts the ants.  Ants love to eat the sugar on the cotton plants and so they defend it from pest attacks.  Happy ants, pest free cotton. 

The Fairtrade organic clothing we sell is made in India and the cotton is grown there, it is picked by hand so using natural pesticides means that the farmers and pickers are also healthy.

Amazing Grains

We recently embroidered some of our Fairtrade Organic aprons for a local bakery in Olney called Amazing-Grains.  Knowing that Olney was the home of the hymn Amazing Grace we were interested to know more about the bakery and its name.

Gareth the owner was made redundant after a 30 year career in IT, he realised that his heart no longer belonged in the corporate world.

Over the years, extensive travel had opened his eyes to the fact that most other countries held bread in high esteem unlike the industrialised products passed on as bread for the lowest possible price in the UK. So after dabbling in food distribution, Gareth decided to address this issue by learning to bake “real bread”, using good quality ingredients, and an honest approach. Sales began with friends, then from the local pub, to deliveries 5 days a week, all produced from a 30 Sq ft kitchen in a tiny 2 bed cottage in Emberton, just outside Olney in North Buckinghamshire.

Now baking 4 days a week from a converted workshop in East St in Olney, Amazing-Grains produces around 300 loaves a week, using only natural ingredients, time and no processing aids, to produce breads with a flavour, second to none.

The name of the bakery was based on the hymn Amazing Grace written by the curate of Olney, John Newton and published in 1779. It is one of the most recognisable songs in the English-speaking world.

We love supplying aprons to local businesses and particularly to one that has such an interesting story. You can find about more about Amazing Grains HERE

Fairtrade Fortnight 2019

Fairtrade Fortnight runs from 25th Feb – 10th March 2019

Fairtrade fortnight is run for two weeks each year when campaigners, businesses, schools and groups show their support for the farmers and workers who grow our food, crops and manufacture our clothes in developing countries, people who live in some of the poorest countries in the world and who are often exploited and badly paid.

At Impact Trading and Cotton Roots we supply many businesses and groups with Fairtrade Organic clothing and have a wide range of colours in t shirts, polos, sweatshirts, hoodies as well as children’s clothing

We also supply beautiful heavyweight Fairtrade, Organic cotton Aprons

All of these products can be printed and embroidered with your branding or supplied plain.

For more information please visit:

www.cottonroots.co.uk
www.impacttrading.co.uk

Fairtrade Ideas for Schools in Fairtrade Fortnight – Newsletter

We have decided to post copies of our newsletters which we email out to our supporters. This one was designed to let our customers know about some our our new supplies which we hope they might be interested in.

We love supporting Fairtrade and our range is ever increasing.

The newsletter includes Fairtrade and organic T Shirts, Tea Towels, Tote Bags – all plain ready for printing with fabric pencils or pens by school children.  If we are sent photographs of any final results we will create a gallery on our blog of the resulting designs.  Maybe rustle up a Fairtrade prize or two!

Our new supplies with Fairtrade Fortnight in Mind
Our new supplies with Fairtrade Fortnight in Mind

The People Who Grow the Cotton for our Fairtrade & Organic Clothing

I thought you might  like to know about the people who plant, care for and harvest the cotton which we use in our Cotton Roots clothing.  After all that’s what Fairtrade is all about – having a connection and supporting people at the start of the cotton chain – the farmers.

The reasons I love Fairtrade and consider it the “Gold Ribband” of ethical certification is because I know where every step of the manufacturing chain takes place.  Including the cotton farmers, the weavers, knitting mill, dyers and manufacturer of the actual garments.

The cotton for our range of Fairtrade and Organic Polo Shirts, T Shirts, Hoodies, and Tea Towels is all grown in the Indian state of Odisha by Pratima Organic Growing Group.

The cotton for our Cotton Roots clothing grown by Pratima Growers group
The cotton for our Cotton Roots clothing grown by Pratima Growers Group

We work closely with Sreeranga (Ranga), who is on the centre left picture above. Ranga often spends time with the cotton farmers and is vital to create the link between you, our supporters and customers, our team at Cotton Roots and the cotton farmers.

The cotton farmers have a Facebook page and I thought it would be a great idea to let our customers know about it.  Maybe you can contact them and thank them for their top quality cotton? Or post some photographs showing the clothes you have which has been made with their cotton? This is the Pratima Facebook page.

Go on make the connection to the people who grew the cotton for you and who you try to support through Fairtrade.

Really enjoyed this article written by Sureel Singh who is a Fairtrade Liaison Officer and worked with the farmers. Transformation journey for Pratima Cotton growers.  It gives a really good insight into the project and the great progress being made.

 

Are businesses doing enough to encourage sustainability?

“Business sustainability, also known as corporate sustainability, is the management and coordination of environmental, social and financial demands and concerns to ensure responsible, ethical and ongoing success.”

The global population has now reached over seven billion, resources are increasingly scarce and climate change is a reality. The more we take a sustainable and ethical approach in our daily lives, the better. The same goes for businesses; the more companies that incorporate sustainability into their lifestyles – the better. The two go hand in hand.

Consumers are generally aware of the environmental impact of energy use, transportation, waste and recycling, with basic environmentally friendly actions, such as switching off lights, reusing shopping bags and opting for paperless bills now a part of their daily lifestyles. But far fewer are aware of the relative impacts of their leisure and lifestyle choices and the goods and services they consume.

Brands and retailers have a good opportunity to help consumers understand the broader impacts of their lifestyles and the products they use but are they doing enough? Shouldn’t all businesses be highlighting the importance of sharing environment related information with consumers to help them make the right choice for the environment and a sustainable future?

In 2013, research from the World Economic Forum’s Sustainable Consumption initiative revealed these findings:

  1. Sustainability needs a makeover: Consumers need to be excited and motivated by sustainability in order to engage. Business needs to use language that is more familiar and offer consumers incentives and sustainable choices that are more relevant to their lives and aspirations.
  1. Companies need to use six key strategies to seize the opportunity and enable more sustainable lifestyles. They can strengthen the consumer case for sustainability, engage their marketers, better integrate sustainability into research and development, create platforms for consumer collaboration, activate employees as advocates, and quantify outcomes.

There is a significant opportunity for businesses to help consumers make major changes in their lifestyles and purchasing habits. Just by providing better information and labelling, increasing awareness about the issues that are important to their company, helping raise money for causes that are important to their stakeholders and ensuring sustainability takes centre stage when it comes to product innovation.

At Cotton Roots, we are passionate about making clothing which are fairly made, ethical sourced and sustainable in creation and we believe strongly in promoting this cause.

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Here are just some of the things we do at Cotton Roots, which we hope encourages more people to think of ways they too, can lead a sustainable lifestyle:

  • 95 percent of all the bags we use to package our garments are recyclable.
  • We find use for all of garments and donate clothes to Willen Hospice which is local to us, or to World in Need www.winint.org
  • Where we can’t use some of the by-products of our manufacturing process we try and find another use for them
  • We often have small amount of rayon thread left on spools. Local schools and universities use the spare thread
  • We also collect our off-cuts of FAIRTRADE and organic fabric. We have found university students really appreciate these pieces of material for use in often ground-breaking fashion designs.
  • Our cardboard is donated to schools when it is useful, otherwise it is sorted for recycling.
  • Whenever we can we purchase items which are pre-used.
  • We purchase our electricity from Ecoctricity. After much research we selected Ecotricity as the energy supplier most committed to renewable energy.
  • We have recently found a printer that uses vegetable oil inks. We also use recycled paper throughout the company or paper which uses FSC managed forests.

What about you? What do you think? Do you think businesses are doing enough to promote sustainability?