Author Archive

COP26 | The SFA meets with the Mongolian Delegation

Posted by Fiona Jones

This past week, the SFA was honoured to meet with the Mongolian delegation for COP26 in Scotland for a tour of Alex Begg’s factory. Alex Begg, a longstanding member of the SFA, is a leading manufacturer of luxury goods and accessories and is committed to sourcing sustainably produced cashmere from Mongolian producers. The delegation’s visit to the factory, and the discussions around climate and land restoration which followed, shows the commitment that the new administration has towards sustainable trade and aligning Mongolia’s international policies on trade and climate change with the goals of the Paris Agreement and the UN’s SDGs. The SFA is looking forward to developing public and private sector partnerships with the support of the new cabinet; these multi-stakeholder partnerships will help to support the Mongolian people towards creating an economy in sustainable cashmereas well as creating better systems by which to support this new economy.

Mongolian media also attended the tour of Alex Begg’s factory to document the ministers’ visit. Their reporting for the Mongolian public helped to highlight the role that the cashmere sector can have in mitigating the climate crisis and share new information and ideas from the government’s visit. Systemic change will involve participation along every stage of production and will require the support of a committed government and strong partnerships.

The SFA’s holistic approach to sustainable cashmere is a good example of what is required to make lasting and widespread change in this industry. It requires the cooperation of the whole supply chain and the support of the global market to address issues of land management, animal welfare, clean fibre processing and herder livelihoods. It is through economic incentives that we will see change on the ground as a market-led approach acknowledges the important connection between a thriving economy and environmental impact.

As the SFA continues to grow and expand, we look forward to future opportunities to connect with the Mongolian cabinet and further develop the relationship and ideas introduced at COP26 that promise a better future for cashmere. 

Sustainability in the Cashmere Sector Conference | Culture Panel

Posted by Fiona Jones

The Sustainable Fibre Alliance organized a three-day virtual conference this Autumn on the Sustainability of the Cashmere Sector. On the second day of the conference, four Mongolian speakers spoke on the theme of “Culture” how we can we learn from other disciplines that look at the realities of nomadic life from different angles. The Culture Panel speakers helped enlighten us by sharing their greater knowledge and understanding on how cultural photography, cultural artwork and ethnographic research are able to expose humanity’s connection to the natural world and what we can learn from pastoralists’ mentality and wisdom – their way of living that is inherited from ancient ancestors yet still so vibrant today.

P. Battulga, founder of the “EGEL” project for the study of Mongolian ethnic heritage and photography, gave his presentation titled “Transformation of nomadic life into modern design.” The report was divided into five subsections: Mobility, Colors, Numbers, Equestrian Culture and Miscellaneous. The speaker said that he was trying to give new ideas, new motivation and new ideas to professional designers and anyone who wants to develop the cashmere market in a sustainable way.

The artist T. Nurmaajav, who creates her artwork using the genre of Mongolian painting, presented fiive of her works: “Sunrise”, “Summer”, “Good Noise”, “Peace” and “Mongolian Wind”. She also talked about how she reflects the nomadic lifestyle, the general harmony of Mongolian paintings and innovative expressions in her works.

L. Jargalsaikhan, a nature photographer of birds, butterflies and insects, spoke about whether herders’ livelihoods are at a reasonable level with nature and wildlife, and how climate change and agriculture affect the balance of nature. He compared how natural degradation relates to the seasonality and attitudes of people, to the photographs of birds and animals that he took.

M.Enkhbaatar, a doctoral candidate at the Institute of History and Ethnology of the Mongolian Academy of Sciences, made a presentation on the topic of “Knowledge of Mongolian Shepherds about Goats”. The presentation was divided into four sections: “What is the role of goats in the herd?”, “Is it possible not to have sheep and goats in the city?”, “Responsible grazing of goats” and “Characteristics of goats”. It was also interesting to understand the difference between the Mongolian notion that “more goats destroy pastures” and simply explaining the pros and cons of goats herd.

Article in Mongolian

Тогтвортой ноос ноолуурын олон улсын эвслээс ноолуурын үйлдвэрлэлд тогтвортой ханган нийлүүлэлтийн сүлжээг бий болгох зорилготой сонирхогч талуудыг оролцуулсан “Ноолуурын салбарын тогтвортой байдал” сэдэвт гурван өдрийн виртуал бага хурлыг зохион байгууллаа. Уг хурлын хоёр дахь өдөр “Өв соёл” сэдвийн хүрээнд Монголын талаас дөрвөн хүн илтгэгчээр оролцож, өөрсдийн сонгож авсан сэдвийн хүрээнд илтгэл тавьлаа. Энэ хэсгийн чиглүүлэгчээр Монгол дахь Тогтвортой ноос ноолуур эвслийн захирал, доктор Б.Батхишиг ажиллаа.

Монгол угсаатны өв соёлын судалгаа, гэрэл зургийн “ЭГЭЛ” төслийг санаачлагч П.Баттулга “Нүүдэлчин ахуйг орчин үеийн дизайнд урвуулах нь” сэдвээр илтгэл тавьсан. Энэхүү илтгэл нь Нүүдэл, Өнгө, Тооно, Адуун соёл, Элдэв гэсэн таван дэд агуулгад хуваагдсан байлаа. Илтгэгч мэргэжлийн дизайнерууд болон, ноолуурын зах зээлийг тогтвортой хөгжүүлэхийг эрмэлзэгч хэн бүхэнд шинэ санаа, шинэ сэдэл, шинэ ойлголт өгөхийг хичээсэн гэдгээ илэрхийлж байсан ба гэрэл зураг гэдэг хэдэн зуу, хэдэн мянган үгийн үнэ цэнтэй баримт тул төслийн хүрээнд авсан 80 гаруй фото зураг илүү олон зүйл өгүүлсэн хэмээн итгэж буйгаа хэлж байв.

Монгол зургийн аргаар уран бүтээлээ туурвидаг, зураач Т.Нурмаажав өөрийн “Сэтгэлд мандсан нар”, “Зун”, “Сайн чимээ”, “Амар амгалан”, “Монгол салхи” зэрэг таван бүтээлээ хурал оролцогчдод танилцуулсан. Ингэхдээ мөн л нүүдэлчин ахуй, монгол зургийн ерөнхий өнгө зохицол, зохиомжийн шинэлэг илэрхийллийг бүтээлдээ хэрхэн тусгаснаа илтгэлдээ өгүүлж байлаа.

Байгалийн тэр дундаа шувууны, эрвээхэйн, шавьжны зураг авдаг гэрэл зурагчин Л.Жаргалсайхан илтгэлдээ малчдын ахуй амьдрал байгальтай, ан амьтадтай зохистой түвшинд байж чадаж байгаа эсэх, уур амьсгалын өөрчлөлт, газар тариалан зэрэг нь байгалийн тэнцвэрт хэрхэн нөлөөлж буй талаар ярилаа. Байгалийн доройтол цаг улирлын байдалтай яаж холбогдож байгаа, хүмүүсийн хандлага зэргийг өөрийн авсан шувууд, амьтадын зурагтай жишин ярьсан юм.

Монгол Улсын Шинжлэх ухааны Академийн Түүх, угсаатны зүйн хүрээлэнгийн эрдэм шинжилгээний ажилтан, докторант М.Энхбаатар “Монгол малчдын ямаатай холбоогдох мэдлэг” сэдвээр тавьсан илтгэл мөн сонирхол татна. Уг илтгэл “Сүргийн дотор ямаа ямар үүрэгтэй вэ”, “Хоттой хонь ямаагүй байж болох уу”, “Ямаан сүргийн хариулга маллагаа”, “Ямааны онцлог шинжүүд” гэсэн дөрвөн хэсгээс бүрдэж байлаа. Монголчуудын дунд нийтлэг байдаг “Ямаа олширвол бэлчээр талхлагддаг” гэсэн ойлголтын ялгаа заагийг ойлгуулсан, ямаа хэмээх малын сайн хийгээд саар талыг энгийн ойлгомжтой талбарласан мөн л сонирхолтой байлаа.

The Sustainable Cashmere Standard Public Consultation is Now Open

Posted by Fiona Jones

SFA first published codes of practice for rangeland stewardship, animal husbandry, and clean fibre processing. The focus for each of these is on continuous improvement with certification at three award levels to reflect compliance. 

In 2022 the SFA is proposing consolidating into the Sustainable Cashmere Standard, a performance-based, outcome-oriented worldwide standard. The Principles and Criteria focus on the production of cashmere in a way that is measurably better for animals, the environment, and herding communities. 

The SCS Principles are the essential rules or elements of environmentally appropriate, socially beneficial and economically viable cashmere production, and the Criteria provide the means of judging whether or not a Principle has been fulfilled. 

To find our more, visit our website for more details. 

Sustainable Fibre Alliance Becomes an ISEAL Community Member

Posted by Fiona Jones

ISEAL is pleased to welcome the Sustainable Fibre Alliance (SFA) into the ISEAL community as an ISEAL Community Member. We are excited to learn from their experience at implementing a standard at a landscape level, and engaging with them to support their improvement over time.

ISEAL members are sustainability systems and accreditation bodies dedicated to delivering benefits for people and planet. They are committed to continually improving their systems and impacts through learning and innovation; collaborating with stakeholders and peers; and are transparent and truthful about how their systems work and how they measure their impacts.

In becoming an ISEAL Community Member, SFA joins a growing number of well-respected sustainability systems that are driving positive social and environmental change across multiple sectors. SFA will be working alongside these mission-driven sustainability organisations to continuously improve the effectiveness of their systems and demonstrate impact.

Further to the recommendation from the ISEAL Membership Committee, and ISEAL Board approval, ISEAL’s Executive Director Karin Kreider said, “I am very pleased to welcome the Sustainable Fibre Alliance to the ISEAL community! And, excited that we now have a member whose primary focus is the cashmere sector and working in Mongolia. They provide an important contribution to the challenges of textile production and their field-based work contributes to landscape-based approaches — a welcome addition to the ISEAL learning community.”

Una Jones, CEO & Founder of SFA commented that, “Being an ISEAL community member is a reflection of how committed the SFA is to improving our standard system and its requirements and processes. We are looking forward to learning from other standard holding bodies and sharing best practices and innovative approaches for tackling sustainability challenges”.

ISEAL encourages any organisation developing or operating a sustainability system with a multi-stakeholder approach and a commitment to credible practices to consider joining ISEAL. 

Find out more on the ISEAL membership page.

About ISEAL

ISEAL is the global membership organisation for ambitious, collaborative and transparent sustainability systems. We’re driving collective efforts to tackle the most pressing sustainability issues and create a world where markets are a force for good.

Joining ISEAL’s learning community helps sustainability systems and their partners to deliver real, lasting, positive change. Our Community Members are sustainability standards and similar systems that collaborate to scale and demonstrate positive impact. Our Code Compliant members go further, adhering to our Codes of Good Practice – a globally recognised framework for best practice.

Find out more about our members: www.isealalliance.org

Explore evidence on the impacts of sustainability systems: www.evidensia.eco

Sustainability in the Cashmere Sector Conference

Posted by Fiona Jones

The live portion of our first virtual conference has concluded and we want to thank the over 400 attendees and 50+ speakers who helped make this event a huge success! While the live sessions are complete, you will still be able to view the recorded sessions, explore the exhibition hall, and continue to network with the cashmere industry through 14 October.

It is not too late to purchase a ticket to gain access to the platform and view the recorded versions of the live sessions. Please visit our event website here to learn how to register: https://conference.sustainablefibre.org/virtualconference/.

Don’t Miss Wool Connect, September 7-9

Posted by Fiona Jones

Wool Connect Online Grower Conference taking place on 07-09 September 2021

On 07-09 September 2021, The Schneider Group is organising its second edition of the Wool Connect Online Grower Conference. The event will be scheduled across three days, with around 2-hour sessions each day. A wide range of speakers is scheduled to speak at the event.

Each of the three days will cover a different topic. On day one, the focus will lie on the international context for the wool industry. Here participants will hear from brands and retailers as well as NGOs and policy influencers about the future market demand and trends relevant for wool. Speakers of day one include La Rhea Pepper, CEO of Textile Exchange and Elena Schneider from The Schneider Group.

On day two, the focus will be on animal welfare. During Wool Connect 2020 animal welfare was already openly discussed. One year later, some challenges have already been tackled due to better communications along the supply chain. In this session, speakers will report about the progress made. Speakers of day two include Bridget Peachey from AWI, Südwolle Group representative Davide Marcante, Germán García Ibañez from Inditex, Heinz Zeller from Hugo Boss, Marta Maniero from Marzotto Wool Manufacturing, Paul Swan from SustainaWool, Ed Storey from WoolProducers Australia and Rebecca Picallo Gil from Four Paws, among others.

On the third and last day of Wool Connect, the session will be organised around new income streams such as carbon accounting. Mick Taylor from Landcare Australia, Stephen Wiedemann vom Integrity Ag & Environment and others will lead through this session.

Agricultural media specialist, David Cussons will be leading through the sessions together with wool communicator, Elisabeth van Delden. The goal will be to encourage interactive and engaging sessions between speakers and the audience.

Participants to the event can join all three days live via Zoom. However, all recordings will also be made available within the Wool Connect community for everyone who purchased a ticked. Registration is already available via this link. Authentico Growers receive a 50% discount, and just need to contact the organisers by email at woolconnect@gschneider.com to receive a discount code.

Buy tickets here: https://woolconnect.gschneider.com/register/wool-connect-2021/

Wool Connect is a strategic pillar of the Schneider Group’s Sustainability Strategy TOGETHER 2030. Through the online conference format and community, the Schneider Group aims to contribute to a better dialogue and consensus building along the wool supply chain.

Q2 Newsletter 2021

Posted by Fiona Jones

https://mailchi.mp/sustainablefibre.org/sustainable-fibre-alliance-newsletter-13364643

Newsletter 2020

Posted by Fiona Jones

https://mailchi.mp/sustainablefibre.org/sustainable-fibre-alliance-newsletter-2020

Register your interest in our Mongolia Chain of Custody

Posted by Fiona Jones

Interested in purchasing SFA Certified Cashmere from Mongolia this year? Register your interest HERE by April 12 and we will get back to you with more information and the official participant forms.

Why is it important for brands and retailers to commit to Chain of Custody? Committing to the purchase of SFA Certified fibre helps ensure the participation of herders and processors by showing demand for certified cashmere. This in turn increases the amount of certified fibre on the market and supports a more sustainable cashmere supply chain.

Registration for our Mongolia Chain of Custody requires a £500 fee which helps support the SFA’s Chain of Custody operations. While the SFA is not a broker, we will help connect you to certified sellers as well as support you with product and marketing claims.

For questions, contact Gunchi Tumur at gunchinmaa.tumur@sustainablefibre.org

Save the Date – Sustainability in the Cashmere Sector Conference 2021

Posted by Fiona Jones

This September the SFA will be hosting a two part conference to explore Sustainability in the Cashmere Sector. Join us from 8-11th of September for our Ulaanbaatar Conference and from 14-16th for our Virtual Conference.


Registration is now open and you can find more information on our event website: https://conference.sustainablefibre.org/

If you are interested in becoming a sponsor or speaker, please contact Sarah Krueger at sarah.krueger@sustainablefibre.org.