- Danielle Wightman-Stone |
Saitex, recognised as the ‘world’s cleanest denim factory’ has become the only large scale denim manufacturer in the world to receive B Corp distinction, after achieving a score of 105.6.
Founded in 2001, Saitex is a bluesign approved, LEED-certified and Fair Trade facility using technology for maximum sustainability impact and is now the only apparel factory headquartered in Asia to join over 2,500 certified B Corporations around the world, of which only 95 are certified in the category of ‘apparel, footwear, and accessories’.
"It’s an honour to achieve B Corp certification and join the community of like-minded businesses with shared efforts and commitments to responsible manufacturing,” said Saitex founder and chief executive Sanjeev Bahl in a statement. “The public transparency and legal accountability that must be met for B Corp certification will push us even more for continuous improvement, encouraging others to follow.”
B Corps certification means an organisation balances purpose and profit. They are legally required to consider the impact of their decisions on their workers, customers, suppliers, community, and the environment, while meeting the highest standards of verified social and environmental performance, public transparency, and legal accountability, as well as aspiring to solve social and environmental problems. The idea is that the distinction creates a community of businesses building a more inclusive and sustainable economy.
As a certified B Corp, Saitex will need to measure and manage the impact of its business on its workers, community and the environment “with as much rigour as it manages and monitors its profits”.
Bahl, added: “This is an opportunity for us to communicate and spread impact. Instead of resting on a feeling of achievement B Corp, we will continue to aggressively invest and innovate in increasingly sustainable and conscious ways of manufacturing, and continue connecting with organisations and individuals to create an open-source platform of resources. We want to help strengthen the community who is redefining responsible production and be a key part of the global shift to better our world."
Saitex’s current facilities, based in Ho Chi Minh City, measures twenty-two cubic acres with denim washing, sewing and finishing all on-site, working with a high-profile portfolio of brands including G-Star Raw, Everlane, Madewell, J Crew, Target, Eileen Fisher, and Outerknown. The facility produces an average of 18,000 pairs of jeans per day and uses a 2 million US dollar recycling system on-site, which means the water consumption for each pair of jeans is greatly reduced from 80 litres to one.
Images: courtesy of Saitex by Jon Galbarriartu