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Why Ecode ?

Building a better future of fashion together

The Problem

The fashion industry is the second-largest polluter globally, being responsible for 20% of industrial water pollution and 8% of global carbon emissions. On top of that, the majority of the 168 million children that are forced to work operate within the fashion industry. Today, an increasing number of people are aware of these destructive social and environmental conditions. Several studies have shown that 67% of fashion consumers want to see a change the fashion industry. However, they feel like they lack accessibility to the necessary information to do. The problem of transparency and accessibility is three folded.

First, many brands (77%) are not transparent about their supply chains, which disables shoppers to assess their social and environmental footprints.

Secondly, if brands disclose sustainability related information, it is hard for the consumer to differentiate between genuine statements and statements about sustainability that are false or misleading. Unfortunately, many brands ‘greenwash’ and use sustainability as a marketing strategy to strengthen their brand image, while in reality doing little to improve their social and environmental action.

Third, transparent brands that are genuine often lack quick and effective communication tools and rely on communicating to shoppers via extensive sustainability reports. As shoppers have limited time, most of these reports will not be read. Additionally, these reports still do not deliver the objective verification that customers are demanding. To solve the problems of quick communication and third-party credibility, some brands rely on certifications in order to communicate and verify their efforts. However, certifications are not the ideal solution either as they often rely on self-assessment and high entrance fees. This makes them less credible and particularly costly for the SME sector. Lastly, the offer of certifications has grown so much, that it’s hard to navigate between them, compare them and assess which are truly ‘sustainable’.

The Solution

This is where Ecode comes in. Ecode aims to give customers an independent and objective tool that allows them to assess the social and environmental impact of garment pieces in-store and online. Using Ecode, shoppers can make conscious decisions while brands are encouraged to transition as the demand for 'sustainable scores' increases. Through this mechanism, Ecode contributes to a sustainable development within the fashion industry in three ways.

First, Ecode allows businesses to effectively communicate their social and environmental efforts via an independent and streamlined tool. Second, through its loyalty program it encourages shoppers to look at the environmental and social impacts of a garment before purchase, allowing them to make more conscious decisions. Third, Ecode aims to enable consumers to give back by allowing them to collect points and spend these on social and environmental causes. 

By providing its digital passports, Ecode ensures fashion companies compliance with the new regulations of the EU Strategy for Sustainable and Circular Textiles (effective as of March 2022) which requires a digital passport for each product in store and online. Ecode wants to go beyond helping sustainable brands meet these requirements and create an ecosystem in which customer loyalty to brands is generated resulting in numerous benefits for the business. These benefits include increased revenue from sustainable products, a stronger brand image and a closer connection to their customers.

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