What our favorite Spanish retailer is doing with kindness
As many of you, I am a big fan of the products from ZARA. Their collections are affordable, chic, good quality and on-trend. But with the focus on a more conscious living, I hereby like to review what ZARA (part of the Inditex Group) is doing as a positive act of kindness in order to give back.
ZARA offers a special collection, named Join Life. This collection is made out of sustainable fabrics such as Tencel, Lyocell, recycled polyester and biological cotton. With the production of Tencel and Lyocell, the product is obtained from trees and ZARA assures to plant the quantity of used trees back into nature. The recycled polyester they use is made out of recycled plastic bottles. Biological cotton is a production done with respect for human and nature, everything in the right conditions.
- The Join Life Collection might be fairly unknown, they already sold 70 million garments from this collection in one year (2017).
- The collection is available for men, women and children.
- The prices are very good and comparably to all other ZARA garments from their regular collections. Something I really like!
My personal experience with the #Joinlife collection is very good. The qualities of the items are so soft (I love tencel & lyocell) and much better than my regular ZARA items. The prices are competitive with the regular collection, so a good alternative for me. I found the collection easily in every section when browsing through the new arrivals – it’s not hanging separate. I couldn’t find the shoes though. I chose to pick neutral colors for my fitting-session, but the collection comes with many bright and on-trend colors (such as the hoody I try on, comes in bright pink and black too).
ZARA Collecting used garments
ZARA offers all their customers to bring any clothes they no longer wear to hand in for recycling. All handed-in clothes get a second life, through donating the garments to The Red Cross, CEPF, Redress, Leger des Heils, le relais and Eden. If it’s not possible to donate the garment, it will be recycled to create new fabrics.
- The collection of used garments is currently in selected stores only. Too bad you have to check before you go shopping, but it’s easily found online and many stores join ( check here).
- In Spain, ZARA offers to pick up your used garments with the every delivery. New in, old out. Love this!
- ZARA is still working on improving their recycling possibilities. To create new fibres and fabrics, they currently only recycle 100% cotton, wool and polyester products.
- They collected and recycled 12.000 ton of garments in one year (2017).
As a company, ZARA offers support to several organizations fighting for education, wellbeing and humanitarian help. ZARA spends a total of 48 million euro each year to support the following organizations:
- Salta: this organization offers a program for labor integration for those having difficulties. They educate people to work in their stores, factories and logistic warehouses. Currently ZARA educates 550 people in 12 cities worldwide to enter a job at ZARA soon.
- Caritas: With the support of this organization ZARA invests in employment opportunities in Spain, Bangladesh and Cambodia (their main production countries).
- Every Mother Counts: This organization gets support to give mothers the needed medical care after giving birth.
- Water.org: This organization offers micro credits to develop sanitary services and drinking water systems in both Bangladesh and Cambodia (two of their main production countries).
- Entreculturas: An organization that offers education focused on learning a specified profession in Africa, Asia and America. They educate mostly vulnerable groups of youth.
- China Youth Development Foundation: ZARA supports the education, schools and teachers that work on the country side of China.
- Doctors without Borders: ZARA supports this organization in offering humanitarian help in conflict areas (such as Syria, Jemen and Nigeria) as well as humanitarian help with natural disasters (in Italy, Ecuador and Mexico).
In one year, ZARA offered humanitarian help to 1.6 million people in total through the above mentioned organizations.
Note: ZARA did spent 48 million euro in 2017 on social support and humanitarian help, but had a turnover of 25.3 billion euro in that year. This means only 0,0000018 % of their turnover is spent on kindness and giving back. You may want to make up your mind about that;-)
Review & Opinion:
So, this article is to give you an idea of what ZARA currently does to give back and act with kindness. I personally think ZARA is doing a fairly good job in offering possibilities for it’s customers to take action. The collection of Join Life can be bought as a more conscious choice and the customer can decide to recycle. I really like the fact ZARA offers financial support to many humanitarian organizations, but comparing their spendings with their turnover there are opportunities to grow their impact in the (near) future.