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Sustainability expert launches Conscious Fashion Campaign with UN

Published
today Dec 3, 2019
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A new sustainability-focused initiative has officially launched to support the promotion of the United Nations’ Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) at leading fashion trade shows across the world.


CFCKerry Banniganand other sustainability leaders at the UN General Assembly


The Conscious Fashion Campaign has been established by social impact entrepreneur Kerry Bannigan in collaboration with the United Nations Office for Partnerships (UNOP).

“Following a one-year pilot phase to discover what the fashion industry understood about the SDGs and what else could be implemented, the CFC immersed itself into the retail event sector, and specifically trade shows to connect with brands and retailers at the beginning of the buying cycle,” said Kerry Bannigan, founder of the Conscious Fashion Campaign.

The project has already partnered with trade shows in the US, UK, France, Germany, The Netherlands and China, including Coterie, Project and Magic, Neonyt, Pure London, Who's Next Paris, and Kingpins, helping introduce the 17 SDGs to over 96,000 retailers and buyers representing 87 countries.

Advocacy and education are two key parts of the campaign, as well as engaging with industry stakeholders to drive positive change.

In September, the project organised a reception at the SDG Media Zone during the 74th United Nations General Assembly in New York with Lenzing Group, Avery Dennison and Phaze, revealing its one-year pilot programme findings. In a panel talk led by Kerry Bannigan, Lenzing pledged to become the first carbon neutral fibre producer in the world and Eileen Fisher committed to circular design.

Commenting on the campaign’s official, Kerry Bannigan added: “2020 is the year of implementation, but also continued education. Our aim is to help businesses learn and integrate the SDGs into their business models, to develop meaningful multi-stakeholder partnerships and initiatives which secure a future where no one is left behind. The potential for change when you engage the fashion industry is enormous. If we work together to shape the future of fashion, we will create dynamic impact, lasting change and deliver on our core mission to make the SDGs a reality.”

World leaders have called for a ‘decade of action’ to advance the SDG agenda, launching next year. The goals provide a roadmap to building a better world for the planet, and address global challenges such as poverty, inequality, climate change, environmental degradation, peace and justice - many of which are directly impacted by the global fashion industry.

Lucie Brigham, chief of the United Nations Office for Partnerships commented: “Working hand in hand, I believe we can tap into the resources and expertise of leaders within the fashion industry to make the SDGs a success. With a Decade of Action and Delivery for Sustainable Development imminent, the time is now to be creative and innovative. We need to leverage solutions; scale success stories and catalyse commitment to sustainable business models that support the SDG, and ultimately, secure a future, for people and planet, that we can be proud of.”

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