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This page is a list of ethical suppliers which provide fairtrade and/or organic materials and fabrics for making clothing. If additional contributors wish to add non-ethical companies, it is my wish, although non-binding, that there be the strict distinction between the ethical and non-ethical supplier.

Companies to avoidEdit

Company name Reason to avoid Evidence
Brother
  • All machinery in China or Vietnam.
  • Poor working conditions.
  • Health & Safety concerns.
  • Overtime enforcement / abuse.
SACOM
Pfaff
  • Planning/planned to shut down Swedish facility to move to a facility in Shanghai.
  • Grand statement of wonderful expansion for company, wide loss of jobs for workers exported to country with cheap workers.

Pfaff PressRoom

Gray areasEdit

Company name Why a gray area? Evidence
Bernina
  • Parts for machinery produced in Thailand production arm.
Company profile
Janome / Elna
  • Has a majority of its production in Japan, but also has arms in Thailand and Taiwan.
Company profile
Juki
  • Minor issue; seems celebratory of companies in Pakistan working for super-cheap American retailers, and thus, super-cheap wages and conditions.
Juki Magazine Article
Jaguar/Frister & Rossman
  • Has half of production within equitable areas, the rest in China and Vietnam.
Jaguar Company Information
Husqvarna
  • Has a fraction of production within China and Vietnam, has a decent amount of production within Sweden and Austria.
Husqvarna Group Portfolio
Singer
  • Has half of production within equitable areas, the rest in China and Vietnam.
Part of SVP company.

InconclusiveEdit

Company name Why inconclusive? Evidence
Feiyue
  • Seems to have labour unions, no records of labour abuses. However, no evidence found of investigations into labour, not much public info. More research needed.
Company funding profile

Verified Ethical suppliersEdit

Fabric/ThreadEdit

Company name Country International Shipping? Union? Organic? Fair trade? General cost
RayStitch UK Yes Unknown Yes Yes Reasonable
Organic Cotton UK Yes Yes Yes Yes Reasonable
Greenfibers UK Contact only Unknown Yes Yes Expensive
Hemp Fabric UK UK Contact only Unknown Yes Unknown Reasonable
Fair Trade Fabric UK No Unknown Yes Yes Reasonable
Ian Mankin Fabrics UK Contact only Yes Yes Locally sourced Reasonable/Expensive
Drapers Organic Cotton UK Yes Unknown Yes Yes Cheap
Arlandish Isle of Mull Weavers UK Yes Unknown Yes Locally sourced Expensive (High-quality fabric)
Offset Warehouse UK Yes Yes Yes Yes Reasonable/Cheap
Ethnic Crafts UK Yes Unknown Yes Yes Cheap

With thanks to Ruth Singer for gathering some of these sources.

Buttons/Buckles/Hooks/ClipsEdit

Company name Website Country International Shipping? Union? Organic? Fair trade? General cost

Hand ToolsEdit

Company name Website Country International Shipping? Union? Organic? Fair trade? General cost

Sewing MachinesEdit

Very difficult to find any companies which produce their products in their own country. China and Vietnam are very popular places to produce, unfortunately these places are very difficult to judge on labour and health standards due to a high level of secrecy in the organisation and their foreign production facilities.

The best that can be done in this regard is to go with companies that have the best record at face value, and be sure to check on any of the materials or packaging for signs which show manufacture within the country of origin, or within countries with fair remuneration for their workers.

It may also be possible to purchase older machines which were purchased in a more fair and equitable time period, but these older machines may not be able to fulfill the more demanding tasks of modern sewing machines. A quick glance on eBay does show some machines that may have been used to sew together continents which are still up and running after 40 years of use, so it may be premature to count out machines that were made in the UK and Europe.

Other ElectronicsEdit

Company name Website Country International Shipping? Union? Organic? Fair trade? General cost
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