Jan 14, 2020
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Walpole unveils sustainability manifesto for the luxury sector

Jan 14, 2020

Walpole has revealed it will urge members to make a series of commitments as part of a new sustainability manifesto launched at its annual CEO and chairman dinner on Monday evening.

Walpole CEO Helen Brocklenk (pictured centre) with senior representatives from Burberry, Harrods, Dunhill and Johnstons of Elgin - Walpole

The event, attended by over 100 British luxury brands including Burberry, Dunhill, Harrods, Johnstons of Elgin and Mulberry, aimed to set the tone for a gradual shift towards more industry collaboration and a greener future.

“If British luxury is to achieve its target of £65bn in sales over the next five years, sustainability has to be at the heart of every brand’s strategy: for Millennials and GenZ who will account for half of all luxury sales by 2025, true luxury only comes with a clean conscience,” said Helen Brocklebank, CEO of the organisation, which counts over 270 high-end brands amongst its membership.

The manifesto is aligned to the UN Sustainability Goals, and based on four overarching principles, including leading the transition towards a circular economy, and safeguarding the environment and natural resources.

Among others, the organisation will ask members to ensure 100% of their plastic packaging is reusable or widely recyclable, cut their water use by 30% and work towards traceability in their entire supply chains by 2030.

Pam Batty, vice president of Corporate Responsibility at Burberry said: “The luxury industry needs to collaborate and enact policies and programmes at scale to protect the environment, implement more sustainable practices and support workers in its supply chains. 

“While there is no quick fix, we are hugely supportive of Walpole’s British Luxury Sustainability Manifesto which will bring together established and emerging UK brands to implement systemic change and build a more sustainable future for our industry.”

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