A new biodiversity report transforming the textile industry


Textile Exchange after five years of corporate benchmarking – has prolonged the opportunity of its program to cover the vital area of biodiversity.

Biodiversity action is a crucial section of a raw materials business strategy and can provide climate benefits as well as benefits to nature and people.

Figure: The recently-launched Biodiversity Insights Report, integrating data shared by 157 companies, sets the first baseline for the industry.

The aim of the benchmark is to bring Textile Exchange’s Climate+ approach (where the “plus” includes biodiversity, water and soil health) to the epicenter of the textile industry’s action for material transformation. The recently-launched Biodiversity Insights Report, integrating data shared by 157 companies, sets the first baseline for the industry.

As per the report, 51 percent of fashion and textile companies identify biodiversity loss as an urgency risk. The report presents data submitted through ‘Biodiversity Benchmark’ to deliver an industry-specific assessment of how fashion and textile companies are understanding and addressing their impact on nature.

Thus biodiversity is rapidly becoming a focus area for fashion and textile companies.

The benchmark allows companies to comprehend their impacts and dependencies on nature in their materials sourcing strategies, chart a pathway to deliver positive biodiversity outcomes, and benchmark their progress.

Results and learnings from the Biodiversity Benchmark can then be directed back into the community to support transformative change for the sector.

Sustainability standards are the most extensively used portion by companies seeking to address their biodiversity impact. A remarkable 80 percent of companies are growing their uptake of certified materials as a way of dealing their impact on biodiversity. Certified organic cotton and other cotton standards are the most prevalent.

Greater number of companies are taking action to remediate biodiversity loss. Beyond standards, 38 percent of companies are implementing restorative/regenerative measures to support biodiversity, opening up prospects for collaboration across the value chain and within broader landscapes.

A growing number of companies are investing in biodiversity either financially or in kind. 38 percent of companies are making some kind of investment to improve outcomes for biodiversity, focused on projects within their own supply chain or beyond.

Greater transparency is still needed to track biodiversity outcomes. Only 14 percent of companies know the countries where their key raw materials are grown or extracted. Beyond country of origin, companies should also understand the broader landscape of where they are sourcing their materials, and 15 percent have already started mapping this against priority areas for biodiversity.

Understanding where the industry is at, and what the barriers and enablers are to the uptake of best practices, is an important first step. Only by knowing where we are will we be able to create the change needed to halt biodiversity loss and ensure the protection of nature for future generations and the health of our planet Earth.

Textile Exchange congratulates all baseline participants and invites others to join us in using the Biodiversity Benchmark to inform, measure and track improvements along a company’s individual biodiversity journey and as part of a collaborative effort to accelerate and scale action.