The REWE Group is supporting the official seal introduced by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development. By mid-2020, it plans to use the Grüner Knopf in approximately 5,800 REWE and PENNY stores to identify textiles manufactured in accordance with high environmental and social standards. Independent inspectors will complete a comprehensive evaluation of the company to determine compliance with the criteria before the seal is awarded. Various products at REWE and PENNY already meet the ecological and social standards of the Grüner Knopf.
“I’m happy that the REWE Group has been involved in the launch of the Grüner Knopf label, having backed its development from the start,” remarked German Development Minister Dr Gerd Müller. “With the Grüner Knopf, the REWE Group is advocating and supporting textiles that meet ecological and social standards, as well as fair trade.”
Torsten Stau, Managing Director of Non-Food Products at REWE Group said, “The REWE Group has worked for years to reduce and resolve social and ecological issues in textile manufacturing. We would like to further educate our employees and supply chain partners about the importance of more sustainable textile production while highlighting specific measures and goals. The Grüner Knopf label is pursuing the same goals, so we are happy to be involved from the start.”
The 2018 REWE Group guidelines for more sustainable textiles already require the Group’s suppliers to observe social and environmental standards and to refrain from using certain materials of animal origin. The guidelines’ measures and requirements concern textiles used in the REWE Group’s own label clothing, homewares and footwear brands. In its campaign to conserve resources, the REWE Group aims to increase the proportion of textiles manufactured using more sustainable cotton from the current 85 percent to 100 percent by 2025. Under the REWE Group’s Detox Program, its business partners and production sites commit to eliminating hazardous chemicals as well as any of the chemicals defined in the Manufacturing Restricted Substance List by 2020. In the area of fairness and social responsibility, the Group’s partners and production sites must demonstrate that they are conducting valid social audits and are continually learning from the results.
Additionally, the REWE Group engages in multi-stakeholder initiatives, working closely with certification organisations to positively influence the framework for more sustainable textile production. The REWE Group has been a member of the amfori Business Social Compliance Initiative since 2018 and has worked for safer textile production in Bangladesh since 2013, when it signed the Bangladesh Accord on Fire and Building Safety. In 2015, the REWE Group joined the Partnership for Sustainable Textiles initiated by the German government. The REWE Group works within that partnership to promote the living wage and is active in the German government initiative to support environmental and chemicals management.