Dec 11, 2019
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VF Corp ramps up science-based sustainability

Dec 11, 2019

U.S. apparel and footwear conglomerate VF Corporation announced last week the guidelines of its new sustainability and responsibility strategy.

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In its latest report, the Denver-based firm outlined three areas of focus: establishing circular business models to reduce its environmental impact; leveraging its global scale to drive impact across the broader industry; and enabling VF and its brands to serve as a catalyst for sustainable movements.
Working against new “science-based targets” (SBTs), the company aims to reduce CO2 emissions by 55 percent by 2030 and cut emissions by 30 percent within the same year in its production chain, focusing on farm-to-retail materials, sourcing operations and logistics.

The owner of brands such as Vans, The North Face, Timberland and Dickies also announced a new sustainable materials vision, which is key to achieving its SBTs; considering that extraction, production and manufacturing of raw materials account for the largest portion of VF’s carbon emissions globally. 
By 2030, VF commits that 100 percent of its top nine materials, which account for approximately 90 percent of its materials-related carbon emissions, will originate from regenerative, responsibly sourced renewable, or recycled sources.
The company said it underwent an intensive, two-year long collaborative process to develop its new SBTs, which are greenhouse gas emission reduction targets that are in line with meeting the goals of the Paris Agreement.
VF also partnered with global consultancy, the Carbon Trust, to model data across its owned and operated facilities as well as its entire operations. 
“This is the most comprehensive strategic advice we have delivered to an organization on how it can achieve its SBTs across its own operations and its value chain,” said Tom Delay, chief executive, the Carbon Trust. 
“This work sends a strong signal to the apparel sector about the degree of transformation needed to truly address emissions across global supply and distribution chains and multiple brands. The collaborative development process and focus on influencing others is what true corporate leadership looks like. We are excited to see VF achieve its ambitious goals.”
Meanwhile, the “Made for Change” report highlighted that 50 percent of its distribution centers around the world are now zero-waste facilities and 16 of its buildings are LEED-certified.

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