Lessons learned on transparency beyond apparel

The Open Supply Hub has recently organised a webinar on supply chain transparency in the apparel sector. The participants explored some of the key organisations, elements and initiatives that resulted in an unprecedented level of transparency in the apparel sector and how those can and have been replicated beyond apparel. Fleur Meerman, senior policy advisor at the SER, contributed to share the lessons from the textile sector based on her 5.5 years’ experience with the Dutch Agreement on Sustainable Garments and Textile (AGT). The recording of the webinar is now available.

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During the webinar, three elements were looked at specifically: Advocating for transparency (general public advocacy and data owner advocacy), collecting and disclosing data (focus on data owners and multistakholder initiatives) and finally making use of the data (open data that anyone can use and data quality improvement). “At the SER we strongly advocate transparency as a prerequisite for doing international responsible business conduct,” says Fleur Meerman. “We therefore encourage businesses to participate in the Open Supply Hub and share their data.”

The 2022 Fashion Transparency Index states that more major brands than ever (48 percent) now publish a list of their first-tier manufacturers. While by no means complete or perfect, this is an illustration of the enormous strides that the apparel sector has taken toward supply chain transparency in recent years. With more and more sectors turning their attention toward conversations around transparency, many are asking: What worked for apparel? What were the ingredients that allowed a sector to change and advance so quickly? This webinar explored how this can replicated beyond apparel.

Panelists included representatives from across the apparel sector, including the Transparency Pledge, Fashion Revolution, the former Dutch Agreement on Sustainable Garments and Textile (AGT), Mapped in Bangladesh, and Open Supply Hub (formerly the Open Apparel Registry). The session was moderated by the International Corporate Accountability Roundtable.

Watch the recording of the webinar.