The Textile Exchange’s Corporate Fibre and Materials Benchmark (CFMB) programme has launched a new tool to help the fashion and textile industry take urgent action on biodiversity.

The Biodiversity Benchmark will enable companies to understand their impacts and dependencies on nature in their materials sourcing strategies, chart a pathway to delivering positive biodiversity outcomes and benchmark their progress.

The tool was developed in partnership with The Biodiversity Consultancy, technical and policy specialists in biodiversity and ecosystem services, and Conservation International, a global non-profit working to protect nature, and is supported by bio-based materials provider Sappi.

The CFMB programme tracks corporate fibre and materials sourcing practices, aiming to mobilise the fashion and textile industry to accelerate their uptake of preferred materials, such as organic cotton, recycled polyester and man-made cellulosics. Around 200 brands and retailers, including H&M Group, Patagonia and The North Face, currently participate in the benchmarking programme, which is now open to suppliers and manufacturers for the first time.

Liesl Truscott, director of European and materials strategy at Textile Exchange, commented: “Participating companies are already making significant headway in identifying their portfolio of materials, the sustainability programs they are investing in, targets for uptake and improvement, and calculating their volumetric uptake of preferred fibres and materials in use.

“The new Biodiversity Benchmark can help take them to the next stage, from decarbonising their materials to embedding positive biodiversity outcomes in their strategies.”

The Biodiversity Consultancy’s chief executive, Dr Helen Temple, added: “The fashion and textile industry now has an opportunity to establish a leadership position in how it tackles biodiversity and nature loss.

“Nature is in the spotlight more than ever before and understanding where and how companies impact on nature – and what they can do about it – has become increasingly important. Both in terms of operational decisions, and in the pursuit of the systemic, transformational shifts we need to drive nature-positive change.”

To find out more and register for the beta phase of the Biodiversity Benchmark, contact [email protected]

www.textileexchange.org