Sustainable Materials

Choosing raw materials from more sustainable sources for our products is paramount

In line with our unwavering commitment to protecting the planet and its ecosystems, reducing the impact on resources and the fight against climate change, choosing raw materials from more sustainable sources for our products is paramount. Furthermore, we invest and work with other organisations and institutions to increase the range of materials with better environmental performance, which make more efficient use of natural resources and contain recycled materials. In 2023, 100% of our cotton will be more sustainable and cellulosic fibers will be sustainable, as well as linen and polyester will be sustainable or recycled in 2025.

Cotton

Inditex is committed to moving towards more sustainable cotton production, such as organic, BC cotton, in-conversion cotton and recycled cotton. 100% of our cotton will be organic, recycled or from more sustainable sources in 2023. 

  • Organic cotton is cultivated without fertilisers or chemical pesticides and its seeds are not genetically modified. Cultivating organic cotton uses 90% less water and 60% less energy than normal cotton, and reduces the environmental, social and economic impacts of traditional cotton production. 
  • In-conversion cotton is grown using 100% organic practices in fields where the required time has not yet elapsed to eliminate from the soil all traces of the synthetic chemicals that might have been used.
  • BC cotton aims to help cotton communities thrive, while helping to protect the environment by implementing practices that lower the environmental impact compared with conventional growing practices
  • Recycled cotton uses around 80% less water than the conventional crop and has a much smaller environmental footprint. It can also be successfully combined with other fibres.

In 2021, 65% of our cotton came from more sustainable sources.

We cooperate with the most relevant global initiatives to promote the sustainability of the cotton industry:

  • We are proud to be members of the Textile Exchange, a global non-profit organisation that promotes sustainability, particularly through organic cotton cultivation.

  • As a founding member of the Organic Cotton Accelerator initiative, we are encouraging the development of a prosperous organic cotton sector that benefits everyone from farmers to consumers.

Lyocell, viscose and other wood-based fibres

Lyocell, viscose and modal belong to a group of fibres made from cellulose pulp derived from wood.

Starting June 2020, and mandatory for the Winter Collection 2021 and for all products containing man made cellulosic fibers, Inditex nominates those fiber producers that can demonstrate that they are addressing risk of sourcing from ancient and endangered forests. To achieve this, we have a strict Forest Products Policy, and have helped to found an initiative with the non-profit organisation Canopy and other retailers, to protect forests and find more sustainable options for the textile industry.

In 2023, our viscose will be 100% sustainable, in line with the target shared with Changing Markets’ Roadmap Towards Responsible Viscose and Modal Fibre Manufacturing. And 100% of the linen we use in our garments will be sustainable linen in 2025.

With our encouragement many of our fibre suppliers have adopted forest product policies aligned with our own, ensuring raw materials come from sustainably managed woods. We give preference to materials with a high proportion of recycled and post-consumer waste material, and encourage our suppliers to offer more of this type of product.

Lyocell can be mixed with many other fibres, including cotton and wool, and creates a strong, soft and versatile fabric that we use particularly in our denim, T-shirt and dress lines. The process to make TENCEL™ Lyocell is particularly efficient, being made with cellulose fibres derived from the pulp of low-energy input, fast-growing, sustainably sourced trees.

Recycled polyester and polyamide

We are members of the Textile Exchange, which promotes recycled polyester and nylon as preferred fibres. The recycling process of these raw materials reduces the consumption of natural resources, including energy, oil and water, and significantly cuts down on waste to landfill. 100% of the polyester we use in our garments will be recycled polyester in 2025.

OUR JOIN LIFE STANDARD

Our Join Life label identifies the Group’s products that use more sustainable raw materials and more environmentally-friendly production processes.

For the creation of a Join Life article, we use only those suppliers who have obtained the highest scores (A or B) in accordance with the Group's social and environmental standards or, failing that, who demonstrate a firm commitment to improvement by pledging to implement a Corrective Action Plan. Our Join Life products are classified into one or more of the following categories in accordance with their environmental benefits: Care for Fiber, Care for Water and/or Care for Planet.

Our use of sustainable materials, in numbers:
  • The consumption of more raw materials from more sustainable sources represented 42% of the total consumption in the past exercise.
  • In 2021, 47% of our products were labelled with our environmental excellence standard Join Life. In 2022, over 50% of our garments will be Join Life.
  • In the last exercice, we increased the use of recycled materials by 187%