The OTB welcomes People Tree as its newest member! Founded by James and Safia Minney in 1991, their core mission to make every product to the highest ethical and environmental standard has stayed the course of time. Their initial fashion range was launched to meet the Global Organic Textile Standard and they were the first fashion company to be awarded the World Fair Trade Organisation product label.
People Tree believe that fashion can be used as a tool for sustainable development, protecting people and the planet. They are committed to changing the way clothes are made, starting with the materials they choose and the soil the cotton is grown in.
They work with producers to promote fairer working and trading conditions and to empower them to combat poverty, know their rights, strengthen their position and take more control over their lives.
Their Mission is:
To support producer partners’ efforts towards economic independence and control over their environment and to challenge the power structures that undermine their rights to a livelihood.
To protect the environment and use natural resources suitably throughout their trading and to promote environmentally responsible initiatives to create new models to promote sustainability.
To supply customers with good quality products, with friendly and efficient service and build awareness to empower customers and producers to participate in Fair Trade and environmentally sustainable solutions.
To provide a supportive environment to all stakeholders and promote dialogue and understanding between them.
To set an example to business and government of a Fair Trade model of business based on partnership, people-centred values and sustainability.
People Tree source producers who use traditional skills like hand embroidery, weaving and knitting, and they only use low impact dyes that are free from harmful azo chemicals which are commonly used in the textile industry. They avoid plastic-based fibres and toxic substances, using only natural or biodegradable fabrics, such as organic cotton, linen and wool, or TENCEL™.
The process of mechanisation is slowly making traditional hand craft skills extinct, but People Tree’s support through Fair Trade is helping thousands of artisans keep their traditions and communities alive. Not only do these crafts help the artisans, but they also help the planet. Using a hand loom instead of a machine save one tonne of CO2 per loom, per year.
Another planet friendly initiative that People Tree employ is the Give Back Box. When you order from People Tree, you can reuse the packaging that your product(s) were delivered in and send it freepost to donate unwanted clothes, home textiles, handbags, jewellery and household items to charity.
People Tree will be a key member of the OTB and GOTS’ new Organic Textile Group. You can find a full range of their products on their website including their acclaimed V&A collection in collaboration with the Victoria & Albert museum which is a stylish and contemporary collection which celebrates the beauty and variety of pattern that the museum is renowned for.