This measures the quantity of MEC-brand apparel materials (yards, %) that are bluesign® approved. This calculation is based on materials purchased for production that will be in stores the following year (i.e., "materials forecast". At this time, it's based on MEC-brand apparel only and does not include hard goods.
Bluesign AG is a Swiss organization that has developed leading environmental health and safety standards for the textile industry, and certifies materials produced in facilities that are bluesign system partners, and have an environmental management system (EMS) in place.
Our goal is to eliminate unnecessary environmental harm in how our products are made and used. For 2012, our original target was for 30% of all MEC-brand apparel materials to be bluesign approved. Based on our performance in 2011, we decided to increase that target to 50%.
In 2012, 53% of all MEC-brand apparel materials forecast were bluesign approved (1,236,000 yards of 2,348,000 total yards).
We are proud of these results, and celebrate the successful efforts of our team and supply chain. Progress was achieved through the focused and persistent efforts of our Materials Developer, along with our design and buying team. Over the last three years, an increasing number of our mills responded to our request to become bluesign system partners, providing more textiles that meet our performance (and other) requirements.
We're committed to continuing to increase the amount of bluesign-approved materials we use. Our 5-year target is to have 100% of MEC-brand product materials bluesign-approved. To achieve this, we're expanding our scope to include hard goods materials, such as packs, tents, sleeping bags, and watersports dry bags. In 2013, we'll benchmark the yardage of bluesign-approved materials used for hard goods. And we'll start measuring our progress by product category so we can set our interim targets and take action accordingly.
We're also working to formally integrate benchmarking and tracking into our regular product and materials information systems. When this is complete, it'll be easier for our designers and product managers to manage target outcomes. Finally, we'll continue to engage with our supply chain and outdoor industry peers to encourage mills and raw material suppliers to become bluesign partners.