When you buy organic cotton clothing and other organic cotton products from Kasper Organics, you can trust that you are contributing to a healthy environment. Not just in ecological sense, but in the sense of working conditions for the people who make the organic cotton clothing industry a reality. I have been working with most of the below listed companies for 8+ yrs. and have found them to be the most caring and conscientious individuals, and that is reflected in the way they do business.
The following information was obtained by researching web sites and direct contact. My inquiry was not only about factory conditions, but I also asked what they knew about the farm workers conditions. So this profile also includes some comments in that area. Personally, this is one of my greatest concerns. I believe one of the most important contributions to the well being of our fellow humans that we can make thru the support of organic cotton and organic produce, is supporting farms where the workers do not have to be exposed to the toxic chemicals they would be on a conventional farm. And not only the people that work on the farms, but the people, including children, that live in the surrounding areas.
We are proud to work with the following companies in supporting sustainable organic farming pracitces, fair trade, respect for the natural environment and ecology and human rights. Environmental and social and economic justice are our priorities.
Organic Threads, by Gail Richards, Founder an Owner:
Organic Threads was founded in September 1994. We have over the years been working to help support the environment in whatever way we can. We were working in the wind electric turbine business (alternative electric power) before supporting organic cotton. When we learned of all the chemicals that are applied to cotton during its growing time, we decided to think of something to support the organic cotton farmers. If products are not manufactured from the organic cotton that is grown, the farmers have no support for their more labor intensive farming methods that are necessary for organic crops.
Socks are a product that most everyone needs to buy at some time. A commonly worn product that could be made in the USA & support our organic cotton farmers seemed like a good business plan to us. We are happy to offer
our athletic style crew socks made in the USA from certified organic cotton grown in the USA. Now also available in Foxfibre Brown and Foxfibre Green. Made from organic cotton that is grown in colors. Do dye is required!
SOS From Texas:
The Oldham family has been growing cotton for over 100 years in Texas. Our grandfather broke out prairie grass to plant cotton in the rich soil. Grown and Processed, in Texas at a TDA certified family farm and a TDA (Texas Dept. of Agriculture) certified mill. Then the fabric is cut and sewn locally, providing jobs in the community, under the supervision of the Oldham family.
Raising cotton conventionally is one of the most harmful agricultural activities across the world. Cotton is a natural fiber that offers comfort regardless of the season, but when cotton is grown without the organic certification, count on it to have used a sizable chemical load.
Internationally, the chemical load may be even higher, since developing countries may have less stringent regulations for crop production.
Our farming practices include crop rotation and natural fertilizers. This helps create a healthy environment that attracts and sustains beneficial insects to keep our crop healthy, instead of toxic fertilizers and insecticides. It also keeps our soil healthy, so it will always remain productive.
In contrast to the image of most garment producers who use non-US labor (and many even within the US) Maggie’s has helped to develop a worker owned sewing cooperative in a highly impoverished area of Nicaragua, giving women there an alternative to the sweat shops they were previously forced to work in. These women are now producing organic camisoles and tee shirts which Maggie’s from them, providing hope for the future of the whole community.
When we began Maggie’s in 1992, we contracted directly with the farmers, purchasing their crop directly, and running it through the spinning, knitting, finishing and sewing ourselves. This was very expensive, and as we were not production experts, it was really more than we could handle.
As we grew, and as the industry grew, we spent the next few years getting our farmers in touch with our spinners (and vice-versa). This enables us to purchase finished yarn from the spinners. The apparel industry being in such stress, we lost at least three spinners (they refused to spin OC anymore, etc.), and we had to scramble just to keep a source of supply. So more and more we lost contact with the farmers.
Bená Burda for Maggie's Organics/Clean Clothes Inc.
Our business practices are based on a lifestyle committed to living lightly on the earth, following good sense rather than trends, supporting sustainability, recycling and non-chemical alternatives. We are a part of the Co-op America Business Network whose members pledge to conduct business in a way that addresses the needs of consumers, employees, our communities and the environment. We support our community by keeping the manufacturing process at home.Fair Trade A fair trade to us is a holistic approach, a challenge with the aim to establish a fair cooperation between the partners of the whole production process. The farmers that grow the organic cotton are guaranteed prices that are higher than a conventional crop.
Here's a quick summary of what makes HEMPY'S a sustainable and people-friendly business! Provided to me by a representative.
- We use hemp, organic cotton, recycled cotton and recycled synthetics in the manufacture of our products.
- Most of our products are Made in the USA and sold "locally" in the USA and CANADA.
- We work closely with small, family-owned/operated sewing shops in our local San Diego, CA region.
- We re-use and recycle EVERYTHING that comes through our shop. There is almost no waste!
- We focus on quality as our first priority--for even eco-friendly products aren't eco-friendly if they fall apart.
Windrose Trading Company: (excerpts from their web site)
Dear Friends many thanks for your continued support of us, and our Fair Trade, Cottage Industry partners! Thanks to your support we continue to help our partners and artisans develop and bring their quality handmade goods to retailers and customers who value products that support fair trade, sustainability, health and well-being.
Our company was founded in 1977, with the sincere desire to build this type of long-term sustainable network that helps people and our environment.