Europe 

We have a strong presence in Europe, with nearly 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 its sustainability work, our European region leads initiatives on driving supply chain responsibility and transparency, eliminating harmful chemicals and developing more sustainable products.

 

Sustainable Products

  • In 2017, C&A brought the first GOLD level Cradle-to-Cradle CertifiedTM products to market in stores across Europe, and have since developed many new products and collections, which reached the selling floor later in the year. In Europe, we will deliver more than two million Cradle-to-Cradle pieces over the next two seasons.
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  • We were the first brand partner of Fashion for Good, where we are collaborating to drive circular economy approaches into our supply chain with other leading brands. In 2017, we shared our learnings from the development of our Cradle-to-Cradle CertifiedTM products with the industry through the Good Fashion Guide.
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  • In Summer 2017, we launched a new BIO COTTON campaign across all our European stores, running in-store, online and via social media. The region also supports the Organic Cotton Accelerator, a multi-stakeholder initiative focused on building a prosperous organic cotton sector that supports farmers.
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  • Man-made cellulosics such as viscose make up 7.5% of the fabric we use and are derived from dissolving wood pulp made from trees. In 2017, C&A Europe committed to source 100% of our man-made cellulosic fibres from suppliers who have practices in place to prevent ancient or endangered forest products entering their supply chain.
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  • In 2017, C&A Europe started taking meaningful steps to increase our use of recycled fibres in our collection. We have used recycled polyester in outerwear and blouses, recycled nylon in lingerie and have continued using recycled cotton in denim.
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  • In October 2017, we launched our second Europe-wide campaign to communicate our commitment to 100% responsible down to our customers and sold 89% of our Responsible Down Standard-certified down jackets within two weeks.
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  • Our European in-store take-back programme, WeTakeItBack, was expanded from the Netherlands – where it has collected more than 278,000 kg of clothing for reuse or recycling since 2012 – to Belgium, Luxembourg and Switzerland.
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  • All our European products are free from perfluorinated compounds, and we have eliminated 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 Bangladesh Water Partnership for Cleaner Textiles (PaCT) to strengthen environmental practices in our supply chain.
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  • Europe led the C&A regions in setting water goals, committing in 2016 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%.
  • We’ve been actively working with Ethical Trading Initiative, Fair Labor Association, and other brands to support the Syrian refugee workforce in Turkey’s garment industry. In 2017, we have continued our unannounced audit protocol for every production unit in order to ensure that no workers are abused.
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Sustainable Lives

  • Europe was the first region to launch C&A’s new global, multi-channel sustainability communications campaign, #WearTheChange, in February 2018. The campaign was launched across in-store, online and print touchpoints, featuring products with verifiable sustainability claims. Although #WearTheChange has only just been launched, it is already attracting positive feedback from employees and customers alike.
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  • During the Inspiring Women 2017 campaign, 12,801 C&A Europe employees mobilised to make a difference for charities that help women live safe and successful lives.
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  • Between January 2017 and April 2018, C&A customers donated over €408,000 to Save the Children to help refugees in Europe, and another €225,000 to other emergencies worldwide. Donation boxes were available in 1,150 C&A stores in Germany, France, Belgium, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Spain, Portugal and Italy.
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  • Customers in our European retail countries voted to decide how C&A Foundation should allocate a €300,000 donation between GoodWeave, Remake and Canopy – all working to make fashion a force for good.
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  • Between March 2017 and February 2018, C&A Foundation funded 142 initiatives in 18 European countries, donating €2.9 million through store giving. The recipients of the money were chosen by our employees via our C&A Together community giving programme.
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