Sustainability in the Fashion Industry

Sustainability in the Fashion Industry

Sana Vakeel, Rashmi Kaushik
Copyright: © 2020 |Pages: 12
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-7998-2728-3.ch003
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Rising awareness among consumers about reducing, recycling, and re-using garments has given birth to the concepts of reverse commerce (re-commerce) and re-fashioning in the apparel industry. Re-commerce in the fashion industry is booming just like any other re-selling business, which sells electronic items, furniture, and vehicles. The trend of fashion re-commerce is quite popular not just online, but also among the offline retail stores across the globe. Factors that have contributed to the growth of the re-commerce fashion industry include tough economic times, budget constraints, and increased awareness among consumers about keeping the planet green by reducing waste. Re-fashioning helps consumers in saving a lot of money while encouraging them for conscious consumption. Based on secondary sources data, the study focuses on motivation and barriers to fashion re-commerce. Sustainability is also an upcoming concept in the fashion industry. The authors discusses sustainability in the fashion industry with the help of a review of literature available for the same.
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The idea of sustainability is not new for us but the sustainable fashion is a new idea taking shape now a days. During the starting phase of 90’s only innovators entered and changed existing phenomenon of fashion industry and explored the opportunities which later on became norms of this industry. Motive behind all the ideas was the thought that through the clothing one can maintain social and cultural diversity and can be a motivational factor for new business models.

A rapid growth of Consumerism and globalization are two leading factors of new fashion industry, consumers of now a days are obsessed with the latest fashionable clothes and accessories which can be available only because of mass production and this mass production of clothes and fashion accessories accelerated the growth of fashion industry. We all, as a supplies also as a consumer always look for low cost products with speedy and free delivery facilities. We as a customers are already capable enough to collect and cross check all the information regarding the required products and their alternatives.

It take a lot of efforts to differentiate between ethical and unethical brands while making the purchases from the global market, as the customers have already realized that most of the companies are not following the ethical practices when it comes to the production and this realization proved to be an excellent beginning towards motivating customers to search for more reliable and sustainable options in the fashion industry, with the urgent need of a new marketing practices to have a more reliable and stronger and positive relationship between brand quality, credibility and the consumers.

Objectives of the Study

  • R1: To narrow down definition of sustainable fashion and finalize its importance in the sustainability movement and to differentiate between fast and sustainable fashion.

  • R2: How exactly consumers are going the get benefits because of sustainable fashion and what are the marketing techniques companies can use to attract the new customers.

Sustainability: This term was first in 1987 when the World Commission on Environmental Development explained that ‘sustainable development is the process to meetswith the needs of current generations without decreasing the potential of future generations to meet their own needs’ (Berfield, 2015).

Sustainability can be any step taken towards to maintain an ecological balance between producing, supplying, and purchasing goods and the preservation and maintenance of natural resources.

There is no conflict among researchers and activists on the term sustainability but they are still not able to describe a full proof process as of yet. Sustainability as an activity has gained traction in the business world all the entrepreneurs are trying to find out the solutions that concludes as ecologically friendly clothes and accessories thatconsumers actually preferring over non-sustainable counterparts.

Definition of Sustainable Fashion

Sustainable fashion implies ethics, durability and the reuse of products. A single definition of sustainable fashion is difficult to finalise because of the absence of current industry standard. The whole idea of sustainable fashion moves around a various terms like eco-friendly, ethical trade, sustainable, slow, eco etc. (Cervellon & Wernerfelt, 2012), attempting to emphasize on and make a correction in the variety of perceived wrongs in the fashion industry including animal cruelty, environmental damage and worker exploitation (Bin, 2014)

All the above terms are used interchangeably and frequently for different Objectives just because of the ambiguity, for example, Choi et al. (2012) defines ‘ethical fashion’ as ‘fashionable clothes that incorporate fair trade principles with sweatshop free labour conditions while not harming the environment or workers by using biodegradable and organic cotton’, whereas Cervellon and Wernerfelt (2012) use ‘green fashion’ to refer to much the same set of issues.

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