SCI supports existing initiatives that are considered to be the best opportunities for reducing the number of overlapping audits, such as the Social & Labour Convergence Programme (SLCP). This creates mutual benefit, also ensuring IAF’s and ITMF’s manufacturing member’s influence in these initiatives. SCI also ensures that the issues of audit and standard fatigue remain top of mind.
The Standard Convergence Initiative (SCI), jointly set up by the IAF and ITMF, aims to reduce audit and standard fatigue in the apparel and textile industries.
SCI supports initiatives like the SLCP and measures third-party standard holders’ progress towards reducing redundancies.
It also collaborates with the STTI to improve purchasing practices.
Through its collaboration with the ITC’s Standards Map Database, SCI measures which third party standard holders are moving in the right direction to reduce audit and standard fatigue, and it addresses those standard holders that need ‘a nudge’ in the right direction. And finally, it connects to other projects that may help the cause, such as the Sustainable Terms of Trade Initiative (STTI), which is building a structural conversation between brands and their suppliers on the improvement of purchasing practices, IAF said in its March 2023 newsletter.
Reducing the number of overlapping standards, for example by dropping their proprietary standard in favour of third-party standards, is one way in which brands can improve purchasing practices that is propagated by STTI. Through SCI, IAF and ITMF will continue to push actively for the reduction of audit and standard fatigue.
The IAF and ITMF had jointly held a virtual session about the SCI view on progress in the reduction of audit and standard fatigue on February 13, 2023. Speakers from the industry (Pan Brothers, Indonesia), SLCP, ITC, standard holders (OEKO-TEX and WRAP), and SCI shared their perspectives.
Fibre2Fashion News Desk (DP)