ZDHC has expanded the scope of its work to cover fibre production to account for the environmental impact of fibres. The initial focus of the document is the fibre group viscose and modal. This latest set of ZDHC Guidelines makes a significant contribution to the industry by giving brands and manufacturing facilities producing man-made cellulosic fibres (MMCF) an aligned approach for emissions control. They also offer an aligned approach for the recovery of Sulphur compounds, part of the inputs, as well as by-products generated during the production process.

“This document gives fibre manufacturers essential guidance and helps to make tangible progress by providing targets to move forward and tackle emissions in a meaningful way. The guidelines support ZDHC’s holistic approach to transforming the entire value chain.” Phil Townsend, M&S.

The Importance of Fibre Production in the Value Chain

Fibres are key components of production processes in the textile and fashion value chain and it is crucial to reduce environmental impacts. The guidelines give suppliers producing MMCF unified criteria for measuring output indicators like wastewater, sludge, air emissions and other process-related parameters.

“The release of the ZDHC MMCF Guidelines is an important milestone for the Roadmap to Zero Programme. It represents ZDHC’s first guidelines focused on fibre manufacturing, addressing air emissions and for the first time, resource recovery in production. The ZDHC MMCF Guidelines are the result of a collaborative effort by our Contributors.”  Scott Echols, Roadmap to Zero Programme Director.

An Aligned Approach for all Stakeholders

By providing an aligned approach, the MMCF Guidelines advocate for the improvement of processes to minimise emissions and work towards the recovery of input substances and by-products. This directly addresses the negative impact of outputs arising from MMCF production. The intention with the MMCF Guidelines is to continuously improve and adapt to technical developments and science-based evidence as part of their ongoing evolution.

A collaborative, comprehensive approach was taken to develop the MMCF Guidelines:

“Through ZDHC, subject matter experts discussed possible solutions to drive change. The most enriching experience was having people on this task team who actually work in MMCF production, as the feasibility of the steps was core to our discussions and fully reflected in our work.” Dr. Siva Pariti – Sustainable Textile Solutions.

“The new ZDHC MMCF Guidelines will become a cornerstone of the sector and critical to shifting viscose suppliers towards clean production. I thank ZDHC for its hard work and support of our and our members’ mission to minimise the negative impacts of the textile industry.” Simone Seisl – Textile Exchange.

Additional Industry Support for Implementation

ZDHC will further support brands, producers and other stakeholders to implement the MMCF Guidelines and to highlight the steps towards safer production practices. This will be done through a ZDHC MMCF Industry Implementation Guidelines (Implementation Guidelines), due for release shortly. This complementary set of guidelines will outline recommended actions to ensure smooth and effective implementation of the ZDHC MMCF Guidelines. Also publicly available shortly, the Implementation Guidelines, alongside a series of webinars, will provide additional implementation support and a template for communicating the adoption of the ZDHC MMCF Guidelines.

For manufacturers and brands alike these guidelines, taken together, will actively help to drive progress.

“ZDHC’s MMCF Guidelines are a critical companion to Canopy’s Hot Button Ranking for all brands wanting to use MMCF, to meet their climate, biodiversity and chemical goals. We’re excited that our partnership with ZDHC makes it much easier for brands to assess MMCF impacts, in both sourcing and production.” Nicole Rycroft, Founder and Executive Director of Canopy.

The ZDHC MMCF Guidelines and the Implementation Guidelines help to make a long-term difference to how fibres are produced. They mark an important step in ZDHC’s mission to drive best practice throughout the value chain and to transform every aspect of the industry.

Download the full ZDHC MMCF Guidelines here.

Download the ZDHC MMCF Responsible Fibre Production Guidelines here.

Download the ZDHC MMCF Interim Wastewater Guidelines here.

Download the ZDHC MMCF Interim Air Guidelines here.

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