Europe 

We have a strong presence in Europe, with over 1,500 stores across 18 countries. As the hub of our sustainability leadership, C&A Europe’s work in our products and supply chains is often adapted for other regions. As part of their sustainability work, our European business focuses on driving supply chain responsibility and transparency, eliminating harmful chemicals and developing more sustainable products.

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Sustainable Products

  • Partnering with C&A Foundation, C&A supported the creation of Fashion for Good in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, a global initiative that aims to connect brands and supports the scaling of technologies, processes and business models that have the potential to transform the industry. C&A’s goal is to foster the adoption of these innovations in the company’s supply chain to make change happen.
  • C&A collaborated with Fashion for Good to develop the first Cradle-to-Cradle Certified™ GOLD level fashion garment. The collection of circular fashion women’s T-shirts is available in C&A stores across 18 European markets as of June 2017. Two additional styles, one women’s and one men’s style, will be launched in Brazil and Mexico in September.
    Read more about Fashion For Good and the circular economy
  • Spring 2017 also saw the launch of our organic Bio Cotton campaign across all our European stores. The campaign ran in-store, online and also via social media and was designed to draw attention to our position as the world’s largest retailer of organic cotton. The region also supports the Organic Cotton Accelerator, a multi-stakeholder initiative focused on building a prosperous organic cotton sector that supports farmers.
    Read more about Bio Cotton and other campaigns for customers
  • Our 2016 denim range included products that were made out of organic cotton, recycled denim, or made with an average use of 65% less water in the finishing process.
  • We have achieved our goal to source 100% RDS-certified down, up from 40% in 2015. Off the back of this success, we launched a European-wide campaign to communicate this to our customers in October 2016.
    Read more about down and feathers
  • All our European products are free from perfluorinated compounds, and we are working to eliminate chromium from our leather tanning process.

Sustainable Supply

  • Because most of C&A Europe’s suppliers are based in Asia, the region drives our work to source responsibly. 
  • C&A Europe works with partners such as the Better Mill Initiative (BMI) and Bangladesh Water Partnership for Clean Textiles (PaCT) to strengthen environmental practices in our supply chain. 
  • We’ve continued to reduce the carbon footprint of our stores. 
  • We also set new goals in Europe to reduce water in the production of our raw materials by 30%, and to reduce the water we use in stores, distribution centres and head offices by 10%. 
  • In 2016, we committed to zero waste to landfill in our operations in Europe, where we are also investigating what it would take to develop end of life retail solutions for our customers. We collected 44 tonnes of clothing in our Dutch stores, to be resold as second hand items, or recycled into new ones. 
  • We’ve been actively working with Ethical Trading Initiative, Fair Labor Association, and other brands to ask the government of Turkey to introduce a process that would enable refugees to receive legal permission to work, a process which was finally enacted in January 2016.
  • Since introducing a small charge for plastic bags in our stores in Germany, we have reduced our consumption by 67% since April 2106.  

 

 

 

Sustainable Lives

  • 2016 was the second year of our sustainability consumer insights survey. We maintained a strong position in Germany and the Netherlands and strengthened our scores in France. Read more on listening to our customers
  • We continued our partnership with Save the Children for the second year, raising over €500,000 with our European customers. Our employees from Eastern Europe also took their first field trip to India to see Save the Children’s work in Bengal.
    Read more about giving and volunteering
  • We achieved a high response rate on our employee survey, with 23,551 European employees participating. 85% of our European employees said they were proud of C&A’s contribution to community, society and the environment.
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