19 Mar 2024

How to Embrace Sustainability: Insights from Pure x JATC February 2024

In the wake of ever-mounting environmental concerns, the fashion industry finds itself at a critical crossroads. At Pure London x JATC, we recently hosted a thought-provoking panel discussion, "Fashioning a Sustainable Future," moderated by Rachel Kan and featured industry expert panelists Simon Platts, Jordan Wake, Katherine O'Driscoll and Vishal Tolambia. In case you missed it, here are some of the top points mentioned in their enlightening conversation: 


New Legislation 

The discussion opened with a topical focus on legislations such as Extended Producer Responsibility (EPR) in compelling businesses to adopt circular strategies. These measures are seen as crucial nudges in the right direction, pushing companies to reconsider their production and consumption models, with Platts noting “it's [ERG] going to affect us all, whether we're a high-street retailer, an online brand, a TikTok influencer or a brand that's wholesaling.” 


Urgent Push Towards Action 

There was a consensus among the panellists that a more forceful push is needed, likened to a "red hot poker," to drive businesses towards actionable steps in sustainability. The urgency of this push cannot be overstated, as the window for meaningful intervention is rapidly closing in the face of environmental degradation. It was emphasised that businesses failing to embrace circularity may find themselves struggling to survive in the increasingly competitive landscape of the next 5-10 years.  


Importance of Collaboration  

The panel stressed the imperative of collaboration among brands, professionals and supply chains for effective implementation of sustainable practices. Collective action is deemed essential for meaningful progress, as no single entity can tackle the complex challenges of sustainability alone. Wake highlighted the need for collaboration within the industry, explaining that “the only way that we're going to get through this and over is to find a solution to collectively work together.” 


Innovation from Within the Supply Chain 

Tolambia highlighted the untapped potential for innovation within the supply chain itself. Bottom-up initiatives have the power to drive significant change and should not be underestimated. By empowering stakeholders at every level, from manufacturers to distributors, the industry can unlock new solutions and approaches to sustainability. 


Empowering Young Designers 

Wake discussed collaborative efforts with young designers, highlighting the importance of nurturing talent and fostering innovation at every level of the industry. By providing opportunities for emerging creatives to engage with sustainability initiatives, the industry can infuse fresh perspectives and ideas into its practices. Highlighting the importance of collaboration amongst young creatives, he went on to mention that “it is this meeting of minds. The only way that we're going to get through this and over is to find a solution to collectively work together.” 


Role of Technology in Transparency 

O'Driscoll underscored the importance of technology, particularly AI and digital passports, in enhancing transparency and facilitating circular action. Examples from VESTIS LABS showcased the potential of digital passports and 3D design translations, demonstrating how technological innovations can drive positive change in the industry. 


The "Fashioning a Sustainable Future" Panel not only shed light on the pressing challenges facing the fashion industry but also provided an overview of a roadmap for meaningful action. By embracing collaboration, innovation and technology, the fashion industry can pave the way towards a more sustainable and resilient future.  


If you missed this panel, join us for more important sustainable conversations, as we welcome everyone back to Pure London x JATC on 14–16 July 2024. 


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