IWTO Responds to Pulse Report Calling for More Man-Made Fibers
July 28, 2017

Wool is a natural, renewable, biodegradable fiber - grown year-round by sheep on a blend of water, air, sunshine and grass. Wool has an array of natural properties that make it functional as well as beautiful, and it has been used to make clothing for thousands of years.

The latest research shows that wool sleepwear and bedding increase sleep time, and that fine wool knitwear can help those who suffer from chronic skin conditions. Wool has a long history of recycling, and research suggests wool garments are worn for longer and retained for longer than those made of other fibers.

Wool growers work hard to care for their sheep and land on which they graze, and there is evidence of significant carbon sequestration in the trees and shrubs on sheep farms, which mitigates the effects of greenhouse gases. Holistic land practitioners will also tell you how sheep promote biodiversity and prevent desertification.

But you won't find a shred of it in the recent Pulse Report, which made headlines throughout the fashion industry when it was published in May. Purporting to represent the fashion industry's sustainability performance, the report "scored" the industry on its environmental and social performance. Overall, the industry didn't come out looking great: the overall score given was 32 out of 100. Of more concern than that number, however, are the conclusions made in the report and its subsequent recommendations.

Not only do such rankings disadvantage wool and other natural fibers, but they have the potential to mislead consumers and risk a loss of faith in the industry and data provider.

"A loss of credibility like that would be a shame," says Dalena White, International Wool Textile Organization Secretary General. "IWTO was not consulted for the Pulse Report, which is disappointing because wool is a meaningful part of the fashion apparel industry."

In addition to its numerous natural benefits when used in apparel, wool provides a livelihood to communities all around the world, including developing economies, with social and cultural benefits extending beyond the textile supply chain. To lose yet more wool now to oil-based synthetics would be a great loss indeed.

Read the full statement from IWTO at http://www.iwto.org/news/wool-responds-to-the-pulse-report.

Source: IWTO