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  • Writer's pictureFatimah El-Rashid

The Most Impactful Legislative & Regulatory Measures In The Fashion Industry

The fashion industry has been subject to various regulatory and legislative measures aimed at promoting sustainability. From design and production to supply chains and consumer choices, the industry's impact is far-reaching. Amid growing concerns about sustainability and ethical practices, keeping up with the latest legislation has become crucial for all stakeholders involved.

Here, we'll explore some of the most impactful legislative & regulatory measures, that are worth knowing about:

  1. REACH Regulation: The Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) is an EU regulation that addresses the production and use of chemicals in various industries, including fashion. It aims to protect human health and the environment by regulating the use of harmful substances.

  2. Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC): ZDHC is an initiative by leading brands, suppliers, and organizations in the textile and footwear industry. It aims to eliminate the use of hazardous chemicals in production processes and establish safer alternatives.

  3. California Transparency in Supply Chains Act (SB 657): This act requires retail sellers and manufacturers doing business in California to disclose their efforts to eradicate human trafficking and slavery from their supply chains. It encourages companies to ensure ethical labour practices.

  4. Microbead-Free Waters Act: This legislation, enacted in several countries, prohibits the use of microbeads in personal care products, including cosmetics and skincare items. Microbeads are small plastic particles that end up in water bodies and harm marine life.

  5. Modern Slavery Act (UK): The UK Modern Slavery Act requires businesses with an annual turnover of over £36 million to publish an annual statement outlining the steps taken to ensure that modern slavery and human trafficking are not present in their supply chains.

  6. Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) Regulations: EPR regulations hold producers responsible for the entire lifecycle of their products, including their end-of-life disposal. These regulations encourage fashion brands to design products with recyclability and reuse in mind.

  7. European Union Single-Use Plastics Directive: The EU directive targets single-use plastics, including certain types of packaging used in the fashion industry. It restricts the use of items like plastic cutlery, straws, and cotton bud sticks to reduce plastic waste and pollution.

  8. Energy Efficiency Standards and Labels: Various countries have implemented energy efficiency standards and labelling requirements for electrical appliances, including washing machines and dryers commonly used in the fashion industry. These measures aim to reduce energy consumption and promote eco-friendly choices.

  9. The UK Green Claims Code is a set of guidelines established by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) to ensure the accuracy and transparency of environmental claims made by businesses. It emphasizes the importance of substantiating green claims with robust evidence and avoiding misleading or exaggerated statements.

It's worth noting that these measures can vary by country, and new initiatives continue to emerge as sustainability becomes an increasingly important focus in the fashion industry.


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