Gore Fabrics reports on social and environmental topics in its “Responsibility Update 2015”

  • Mountaineer Stefan Glowacz considers Gore Fabrics as “role model for the textile industry in China”
  • Life Cycle Assessment data for GORE-TEX® hiking boots published
  • Gore Fabrics recognized as “company of the month” by OEKO-TEX®
  • Percentage of bluesign® certified consumer garment laminate volume raised to approx. 60%
  • Gore Production site in Livingston certified to ISO 14001

 

Feldkirchen-Westerham, 17. June 2015 – In its latest version of the “Gore Fabrics Responsibility Update 2015”, W. L. Gore & Associates (Gore) provides information on the progress of its social and environmental programme in the financial year that came to a close on March 31, 2015.

Gore has been working on environmental and social programmes for almost 30 years. The commitment to manage the business in a responsible way is deeply rooted in Gore’s values and principles. For the Fabrics Division this means creating high-performing, long lasting products which are both safe to wear and socially and environmentally sound.

Sustainable management in China

Gore sets high social, ethical and environmental standards for its global operations to ensure fair, safe and healthy conditions for all Gore employees (called “Associates”). Professional mountaineer Stefan Glowacz visited on his way back from a climbing project in Borneo the Gore Fabrics production plant in Shenzhen, China, to see how it compared with the German site close to Munich which he had visited earlier. Glowacz stated: “I could see for myself that Gore’s commitment to social and environmental responsibility is being applied worldwide. As far as I can tell, Gore acts as a role model for the textile industry in China.”

Durability is the key factor in reducing the environmental footprint

Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) is the globally accepted and standardized tool for measuring environmental impacts and comparing products from an environmental perspective. The tool was first adopted by Gore in 1992. After publishing LCA data for a functional outdoor jacket in 2013, Gore Fabrics did the same for a pair of leather hiking boots in 2014. Bernhard Kiehl, leader of the sustainability program at Gore Fabrics: “The results show that the lifetime of a pair of shoes is the single most influential factor in reducing the product’s environmental impact. Because a long lifetime can reduce the environmental impact so significantly, product quality and durable performance are the cornerstones of the Gore Fabrics environmental product strategy. Its appeal to consumers is that they can buy products that function and last a long time, and buy fewer of them.”

OEKO-TEX® Company of the month

The Fabrics Division of W. L. Gore & Associates (Gore) was voted “January 2015 Company of the Month” by OEKO-TEX® for its sustainability program. OEKO-TEX® launched this campaign to recognize textile companies for their ongoing commitment to product safety and sustainable production processes. The January award went to Gore in recognition of the fact that the company has now completely eliminated PFOA related raw materials used in its Fabrics Division.

bluesign® certified Gore laminates rises to approx. 60%

In 2014 Gore Fabrics created a more sustainable supply chain. Kilian Hochrein, responsible for product stewardship at Gore Fabrics: “We are committed to product integrity. This implies that our products are safe and manufactured by clean means. We have increased the percentage of bluesign® certified Gore consumer garment laminates to approximately 60% of the volume sold and will be able to increase it even further in future.” Gore has been an official partner of the bluesign® standard since 2010 and all Gore production facilities are bluesign®-certified.

Livingston plant reduces environmental impact – ISO 14001 certified

In fall 2014, the Livingston Fabrics plant successfully achieved ISO 14001 certification, an established and internationally recognized verification of management system for minimizing environmental impact. The plant had applied for external review and certification of its existing environmental management processes for the first time.

With ISO 14001 certification, the Livingston plant joins the ranks of Nihon Gore’s Production and Technical Center and the Shenzhen facility.

The complete ”Gore Fabrics Responsibility Update 2014“ is available for download here http://www.gore-tex.com/responsibility2015.