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Clothing production has an impact on the environment in so many different ways. Massive quantities of water, energy, and chemicals are used to grow or manufacture fabrics, and to dye and wash them. This leads to water pollution and CO2 emissions, among other things.
To protect the environment and the communities that live in it, we all need to consume less, care better for our clothing, and we at America Today want to offer you more sustainable choices. That is why we have developed our sustainable collection: Care For Tomorrow. This label indicates that a product has been produced using sustainable production processes, and/or contains a fabric with a sustainability benefit. Our aim is to reduce our impact on the environment and to quickly expand the Care For Tomorrow collection.
We prefer to use sustainable materials for our clothing and we plan on increasing our use of sustainable materials in the years ahead. In 2021, 67% of our collection was already made from sustainable materials.
Our aim for 2023 is that all of our cotton will be organic, recycled, or from BCI. In 2025 we want to reach a total of 90% sustainable materials in our clothing.
Below we would like to tell you about the sustainability benefits of the various sustainable materials that we use in our collections. Would you like to know more about these materials and the associated standards and certificates? Email firstname.lastname@example.org.
We love organic cotton
- Organic cotton has the same high quality as conventional cotton but is more environmentally friendly.
- No toxic chemicals are used to grow it.
- Organic production has the potential to decrease cotton’s impact on global warming by 46% in comparison to conventional production methods.
- Organic cotton uses 62% less energy than conventional cotton.
- Our organic cotton clothing is always provided with a certificate that meets the recognized standards in the textile industry.
For more information about organic cotton, click here.
Better Cotton Initiative
America Today has been a partner of the Better Cotton Initiative since June 2018. The Better Cotton Initiative was founded to improve global cotton production, to make it better for the people who produce it, better for the environment, and better for the sector’s future. That way, everybody wins. The Better Cotton Initiative has calculated that, thanks to our contribution to Better Cotton, in 2020:
- Approximately 1000 hectares were cultivated with Better Cotton
- An average of 140 million liters of water were saved
- Around 90 kg of pesticides were avoided in cotton farming.
The Better Cotton Initiative uses a Mass Balance system. This means that Better Cotton isn’t necessarily in our items, but the BCI farmers still benefit from the demand for Better Cotton, just as much as we purchase through Better Cotton. The farmers and workers are happy to tell you all about it: Read their stories here.
Last year, 73% of our cotton came from the Better Cotton Initiative or organic sources. Our aim for 2021 is to increase our use of sustainable cotton to 85%. Sustainable cotton consists of organic cotton, recycled cotton, or cotton obtained through the Better Cotton Initiative.
- By using recycled cotton, we extend the lifespan of a fiber that has already been made.
- The energy consumption for producing recycled cotton is almost 20% less than for producing conventional cotton.*
- Organic cotton clothing is always provided with a certificate that meets the recognized standards in the textile industry.
- Recycled polyester is made from recycled waste such as plastic bottles and plastic packaging. By using recycled polyester, we are giving plastic waste a new lease on life and in doing so we are preventing it from being dumped in our beautiful nature.
- The production of recycled polyester requires 59% less energy and is estimated to have 32% lower CO2 emissions compared to new polyester*
- Our recycled polyester clothing is always provided with a certificate that meets the recognized standards in the textile industry.
- Recycled acrylic is made from acrylic waste. By using recycled acrylic, we give acrylic waste a new lease on life and prevent it from entering our nature.
- Our recycled acrylic clothing is always provided with a certificate that meets the recognized standards in the textile industry.
- Recycled polyamide is made with waste products from other polyamide products such as old fishing nets.
- The recycled materials reduce emissions by 26% compared to new polyamide*
- Our recycled polyamide clothing is always provided with a certificate that meets the recognized standards in the textile industry.
Recycled nylon and recycled polyamide are the same.
- Viscose fiber from the LENZING™ ECOVERO™ brand
- Produced from pulp that is derived from wood, a renewable raw material. Lenzing purchases wood and pulp from responsibly managed forests that are certified as sustainable sources.
- Generates up to 50% less emissions and water impact compared to regular viscose.
All of our LENZING™ ECOVERO™ items have a LENZING™ certificate. More information about LENZING™ ECOVERO™ can be found here.
Vintage by America Today
- By purchasing vintage items, you increase the lifespan of good quality items.
- All of our vintage items are specially selected from the US.
- Be unique! Nobody will have the same item.
- Vintage items are available in our stores in Amsterdam, Den Bosch, Ghent, and Utrecht.
*based on this research
We care about the wellbeing of animals and so we use animal-based materials responsibly. We have forbidden fur, exotic hides, down, silk, mohair, angora, and cashmere in our collections. We are on the Fur-Free List at Fur for Animals (Bont voor Dieren) and we are listed as an Angora Free and Cashmere Free Retailer at the People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) Foundation.
We use a small percentage of leather and wool in our products (0.2% leather and 0.3% wool in 2021) and we are aware of the potential animal welfare risks associated with this, such as mulesing in the case of wool. To support a future without mulesing, we have recently signed the Brand Letter of Intent from Four Paws. From the end of 2021 we started to work with leather that is vegetable tanned and that is produced at a Leather Working Group certified supplier.
Our animal welfare policy specifies that animals must be treated with care and respect and our business partners must comply with EU and national legislation on animal welfare, transportation, and slaughter and only source animal materials from farms with good animal practices, at least in compliance with the Five Provisions and Aligned Animal Welfare Aims. We aim to have full traceability of our wool and leather products by 2025.
In clothing production, lots of chemicals, energy, and water are used. We strive to use water, energy, and chemicals responsibly and to use less of these, so that we have a lower impact on the environment and people.
We have a Restricted Substances List and Manufacturing Restricted Substance List that we share with our suppliers. In it, one will find our demands with regard to harmful chemicals. Our environmental protection policy contains requirements and guidelines on the use of water and energy, among other things. The use of PVC is forbidden in our products.
It is likely the most popular fabric ever: denim. Unfortunately, the production of denim has various risks. The production of jeans requires a lot of water, chemicals, and energy, such as in the washing process for example. The washing process is done to give the jeans the right “look and feel.” Hazardous waste from these processes can end up in surface water. In a nutshell: denim production can have a negative effect on the earth. That is why we try step by step to make our denim production processes more sustainable.
From 2018 we started investigating how we can ensure sustainable jeans washes together with our suppliers. The result is our jeans with a “Low Impact” wash. Jeans are given a “Low Impact” score according to Environmental Impact Measuring (EIM) software from Jeanologia. EIM measures the impact from the process in four categories: water consumption, energy consumption, chemicals, and employee health. A product receives a “Low impact” score when no more than 35 liters of water and 1 kWh are used per item of clothing. To attain a low impact score, the chemical score may not be above 14. This chemical score is determined by adding up the impact of the different chemicals used, and chemicals with a higher impact have a higher classification. The score for impact on employee health should not exceed 6.5 for a low impact score. This score is determined by two factors: the chemicals used and the actions the employees perform. A low impact EIM score can be achieved by, for example, using recycled water, laser technology instead of chemicals, and energy-efficient machines.
In 2020, 48% of our men’s jeans had a low-impact wash. In 2019, it was still just 17%. From 2021 we will also have a number of women's jeans with a low impact wash. It is our aim to reach 100% low impact jeans by 2025.
In our stores, we measure energy consumption with smart meters and use energy-efficient LED lighting.
Also, our stores are mainly furnished with reused and recycled materials. Recycling is also stylish: the unique style of used carpets and the story behind old leather couches, for example, give our stores an authentic look that can’t be found anywhere else.
At our head office, you will find all kinds of reused materials. The doors and carpets are secondhand, or as we like call it: previously loved. This contributes to the unique character at our office. In addition, our office is labeled “Energy Class A” and our energy consumption is monitored by an external party that helps us reduce our consumption.
Our cafeteria catering is provided by OSP catering, a catering company that aims to be the best and greenest caterer in the Netherlands. Sustainable entrepreneurship and organic products are high on their agenda. We see and taste this every day, for example during our lunch, with many regional, seasonal, vegan, and organic products, or when we reuse coffee grounds to grow mushrooms.
We try to adapt our collections as much as possible to the taste and needs of our customers, so that we have less residual stock. Our surplus items and samples are sold to outlet stores or sample sales, or are donated.
Clothing donations in 2020 and 2021:
- Via the NGO Movement on the Ground we donated 885 items of winter clothing to refugee camps in Lesbos.
- We donated winter accessories to a number of food banks in North Holland to use in Christmas boxes.
- We donated 40 raincoats to an auction by Club Atelier to raise funds for Covid campaigns by the Red Cross.
- We donated 30 boxes with samples to Bahay Aurora, a children’s home in the Philippines.
Climate & Energy
Climate & energy is one of our priority risk areas, and not a small one. We recognize the urgency of the climate crisis that we all face and want to do our part. Currently we work on reducing our emissions by using more sustainable materials and processes, but we need to do more and show the data. Therefore, we set the new goal for ourselves to measure our baseline and set Science Based Targets by 2025.