Hennes & Mauritz (H&M) has not always had the best reputation amongst the CSR community.  I have been critical of the company in the past, but the company often known for “disposable” fashion has turned a corner.  In the past year, H&M has ended the sandblasting of its jeans, and worked on improving its recycling and reuse initiatives.  This week the company released its 2010 sustainability report.  Some of the highlights include:

  • The rollout of more eco-conscious clothing, and a reduction in the the use of chemicals
  • Educating H&M’s workers in factories abroad on their rights, and improving factory compliance throughout the company’s supply chain
  • Tinkering with solar power, purchased carbon offsets, and reduced emissions from business travel
  • Reduced packaging, improved the reuse of clothing hangars, and introduced a recycled clothing line
  • A push for more sourcing of organic cotton and improved water efficiency
  • Donations of garments to charities, while supporting work related to HIV/AIDS and UNICEF’s initiatives
Obviously more can be done, but H&M is its way.  Triple Pundit’s Gina-Marie Cheeseman also provides a good overview of the company’s efforts.  Personally, I always feel the “S” in corporate social responsibility (CSR) is overlooked, so I welcome the move towards more attention on workers rights, ethical sourcing, and improved factory conditions.

What do you think about H&M’s sustainability report?  Please share your thoughts.

About The Author

Leon Kaye

Leon Kaye is the founder and editor of GreenGoPost.com. Based in California, he is a business writer and consultant. His work is has also appeared on Triple Pundit , The Guardian's Sustainable Business site and has appeared on Inhabitat and Earth911. His focus is making the business case for sustainability and corporate social responsibility. He's pictured here in Qatar, one of the Middle East countries in which he takes a keen interest because of its transformation into a post-oil economy. Other areas of interest include sustainable development in The Balkans, Brazil and Korea. He was a new media journalism fellow at the International Reporting Project, for which he covered child survival in India during February 2013. Contact him at leon@greengopost.com. You can also reach out via Twitter (@LeonKaye) and Instagram (GreenGoPost). As of October 2013, he now lives and works in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.