Apparel producers have only limited control over their supply chain

Stakeholders

Digital solution providers for textiles industry

IT manager

Logistics professionals

Retailers or wholesalers

Senior or top management

Textile and apparel producers have strong contractual and business relationships, as well as access to data, with suppliers one tier away; such influence and data access beyond this tier might be little or none.

This could be a big challenge for every large brand which wants to make sure that its entire supply chain (and not just the tier 1 suppliers) is sustainable, as almost all their Tier 1 suppliers will be sourcing their raw materials or accessories from smaller suppliers, with some of their Tier 1 suppliers also outsourcing part of their production to smaller suppliers.

But ensuring the sustainability of the entire supply chain through brute force will be very challenging, unless one envisages countless number of tier 2 and tier 3 supplier visits - virtually impossible.

How best can standards, labels and certifications, or optimal use of digial and IT solutions such as blockchain assist large brands in ensuring that the smaller suppliers down the tier are also following sustainable practices?