Italian textile maker Albini Group has recently announced its strategic partnership with scientific traceability company Oritain so as to produce the first 100 per cent traceable Supima organic cotton. The cotton will be used in collections from global luxury group Kering, owner of the brands including Gucci, YSL, Balenciaga, and Alexander McQueen.
The co-operative effort, brought together by Kering hopes to combat fragmented supply chains and build a real consumer understanding of traceability.
Cecilia Takayama, Director of the Materials Innovation Lab, Kering said, “Traceability in fashion’s fragmented and global supply chains is imperative to create a real change. At Kering, we are focussed on sustainable raw material sourcing and this innovative technology for our organic cotton supply chain will enable our Materials Innovation Lab greater visibility to verify farming best practices and fibre quality, as well as ensuring integrity within the supply chain and guarantee alignment with our Kering Standards.”
Organically grown Supima cotton is subsequently woven and dyed by Albini. The collaboration will offer end consumers the ability to buy with confidence that products can be completely traceable back to the origin of the fibre.
It is worth mentioning that Oritain will analyze the naturally occurring chemical properties of the actual fibre by creating a unique chemical fingerprint for the product that links it back to the field which cannot be altered, copied, or adulterated. Cotton products can be tested at every stage of the supply chain in order to check that fabric is consistent with the original fingerprint with only an exact match confirming its authenticity.
Rupert Hodges, Executive Director, Oritain (UK), mentioned , “Traceability has been a buzzword in fashion for some time, but there are still challenges in the industry. Now, through this partnership, we can support Kering, Supima, and Albini Group to further enable sustainable, responsible practices in their cotton supply chains.”
He added that, “The commitment by these industry leaders to work with Oritain shows the value scientific traceability provides to these companies with complex supply chains. We are very excited to expand on this initial project with our partners and help establish a new industry standard for traceability within the apparel sector.”
Moreover, earlier this year, Oritain Global announced a deal with Supima, the cotton association which represents more than 500 American Pima cotton growers, to offer its members the use of Oritain’s trademarked cotton verification technology.