*** Why our prices remain the same? - Because we chose to pass on our savings from the VAT reduction towards our tailors with the help of the Fairtrade Textile Standard . ***

MELA is Hindi and stands for „acting together“.

Fairtrade Cotton Standard
Fairtrade Cotton Standard

The Fairtrade Cotton Standard stands for a fair cultivation of organic cotton. Together with Fairtrade Germany, MELAWEAR has been following the path of fair production right from the start and actively contributes to solving social problems in the textile industry: All our products and collections are 100 percent certified according to the Fairtrade Cotton Standard. Annual inspections by FLO CERT guarantee that the criteria of the standard are met. They include a fixed purchase price for organic cotton and the highest social and environmental standards during its cultivation. In addition, the farmers' cooperatives receive a Fairtrade premium, used for community projects such as schools or local infrastructure. The standard establishes long-term and direct trade relations with cotton farmers, improves their working conditions and strengthens their rights. In this way, even the weakest link in the textile supply chain, the small farmers, are supported and fairly paid.

Fairtrade Textile Standard

MELAWEAR is the first fashion label to become a licensee of the new Fairtrade Textile Standard. The new standard includes social aspects along the entire textile supply chain. This means fair wages and working conditions and a say for workers in the company decisions. The special feature of the standard: for the first time, not only minimum wages but also living wages are introduced. On-site training and education on topics such as environmental management, occupational health & safety and freedom of assembly and association with trade unions, enable the workers to understand the content of the textile standard and their rights. MELAWEAR partner and producer Purecotz Ecolifestyles in India is the first textile producer worldwide to be certified according to the extensive standard. Within six years Purecotz is committed to pay living wages to its employees. Only through the willingness of fashion companies like MELAWEAR, who produce at Purecotz and pay a higher, fair purchase price, can the additional wage costs be covered.

Global Organic Textile Standard
Global Organic Textile Standard

The Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS) is the world's leading environmental standard for the processing of textiles made from ecologically produced natural fibers. We want our textiles to cause no environmental harm. Therefore, the whole MELAWEAR portfolio is GOTS-certified. Our textiles are made of 100 percent Indian organic cotton. Through the GOTS, comprehensive and binding ecological criteria are defined along the entire supply chain and are monitored by independent certification authorities. The standard covers all stages of the supply chain, from the extraction of raw fibers to the environmentally friendly and socially responsible production and distribution of the end products, and offers the highest level of product safety. For example, the standard prohibits toxic ingredients and imposes limit values on all inputs that would otherwise harm people or the environment. We consistently abstain from plasticizers, formaldehyde, heavy metals or optical brighteners and thereby protect both the skin and the environment. All ingredients such as dyes, sewing threads, prints or buckles used for MELAWEAR products comply with the ecological requirements of GOTS.

Grüner Knopf (Green Button)
Grüner Knopf (Green Button)

Since its initiation, all MELAWEAR products are certified with the new Grüner Knopf (Green Button). The Grüner Knopf is the first textile seal that is issued by the German Government state to check companies for social and ecological sustainability. We are convinced that there can only be a real change towards a sustainable textile industry together with political actors . Therefore the Grüner Knopf is now a state framework for this. The 46 requirements of the seal include social and environmental criteria that are checked at both product and company level. In addition to environmentally compatible production, there is a focus on social working conditions such as occupational health & safety, minimum wages and the prohibition of forced and child labor. To start with, packaging and wet processes such as dyeing are checked. Here, the Grüner Knopf includes, among other things, limit values for wastewater, bans on toxic chemicals and plasticizers, as well as a pollutant test on the natural fibers. Certification is carried out by independent testing centers in order to guarantee the highest level of transparency and safety for consumers.

Organic cotton

For us, sustainable production begins with the careful selection of raw materials. That is why we at MELAWEAR only use ecologically grown organic cotton. We have consciously chosen a renewable natural product and decided against petroleum-based synthetic fibers such as polyester. Cotton is traditionally the most widespread natural fiber in the textile industry. Natural seeds are used for the cultivation of our organic cotton. The use of genetically modified seeds is strictly prohibited for organically grown organic cotton and toxic pesticides are also not used. For us the following is valid: No use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers. The production of organic cotton requires less water than conventional cotton. Only natural fertilizers are used, so that the natural soil richness fertility is maintained. The valuable humus content of the soil increases and erosion is reduced. In addition, our Indian organic cotton is harvested gently by hand. We only use Fairtrade certified organic cotton in the manufacturing of our products. Independent certification bodies check on site at least once a year that the standard is being met.

Natural rubber

What is matter of course for the production of our textiles also applies to the materials of our shoes: We rely on renewable resources and natural products. That is why we use natural rubber for the soles of our MELA sneakers. The same applies to the foam and padding, which are also certified according to the Global Organic Latex Standard (GOLS). The organic rubber comes from Sri Lanka, the only country in the world that grows GOLS-certified natural rubber. We are also working there on a social-ecological project to further promote the organic cultivation of rubber. Since no petroleum-based raw material is used in our shoes, abrasion of the soles leaves no toxic micro-plastics behind. We believe in a holistic approach to environmental and health protection, all the way from production to use by end consumers.

Cradle to Cradle

With the Fairtrade and GOTS certifications and being inspired by Cradle to Cradle, we at MELAWEAR take responsibility for a sustainable textile production. The Cradle to Cradle approach describes a completely new way of thinking about and handling resources: It stands for continuous material cycles and a world without waste through the use of materials that serve as nutrients after the disposal. Inspired by Cradle to Cradle, we always design and optimize our products with the aim of using them for as long as possible and then bringing them into closed - biological or technical - cycles. That is why we refrain from using synthetic and mixed fibers. Our products should not be part of a problem, but quite the opposite: they should literally leave a positive footprint.

Verantwortung

We maintain a personal and friendly relationship with our producers in India and Sri Lanka. For us at MELAWEAR this is also part of a sustainable production. Only together with our local partners, who share our values and visions for a sustainable textile industry, can we achieve a holistic change. For example, our textile producer Purecotz Ecolifestyles is the first garment factory worldwide to be certified according to the new Fairtrade textile standard. We are in close contact with all our producers, including regular visits to their production facilities. We have chosen to leave maximum added value in the country of origin of the raw materials. From the cultivation of organic cotton to the finished textile, all production steps take place in India or Sri Lanka. This allows us to create particularly short transport routes and to produce under the best ecological and social conditions.

Our producers

Fairness applies at MELAWEAR in all areas of the company - even in the logistics. Social development in Germany is also close to our heart. That is why we work together with the HiPsy gGmbH and the "FAIRpackers", who are responsible for our warehouse and shipping to retailers and end customers. HiPsy gGmbH has been employing people with mental illnesses in Buchholz in the Nordheide since 2003, to enable them to participate in social life through different forms of care, such as employment in various workshops. With MELAWEAR, a separate logistics department was established, which has grown continuously since the company was founded: from 15 to 500 square meters of storage space. Here too, personal contacts and regular visits are a natural part of our cooperation.

Social logistics
You won't get far on your own. Strong partners are needed to achieve the common goal of a sustainable textile industry and the willingness to take responsibility. This is why MELAWEAR is: - participant in the Bündnis für nachhaltige Textilien (alliance for sustainable textiles) – a multi-stakeholder partnership of about 120 companies, associations, NGOs, trade unions, standard setters and the German Federal Government. Together we work on the optimization of global supply chains. - Pilot member and license partner of the Grüner Knopf. We have supported the development of the German government textile seal with our expertise and are involved in its ongoing improvement. - Trade partner and supplier to the Weltladen-Dachverband (Fair Trade Shop Umbrella Association). The Weltladen shops have been important players and guarantors of fair trade for decades. We have found reliable partners in the Weltladen shops since MELAWEAR was founded.
Partnerships
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