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How sustainable is Balenciaga ?

Balenciaga & sustainability


Balenciaga
First milestones, should be better Click here for score rapport: 10 out of 36

Sustainability summary

Balenciaga has achieved the D-label. Brand owner Kering has started to take sustainability into account. Still, a lot more can be done.

Brand owner: Kering SA
Head office: Paris, France
Sector: Luxury brands
Categories : Male, Female
Free Tags: Kering, Bags, Shirts, Pullover, Suits, Jackets, Dress, Shoes

What's your sustainability news about Balenciaga?

Balenciaga sustainability score report

Last edited: 23 March 2017 by Mario
Last reviewed: 23 March 2017 by Mario

Questions about Climate Change/ Carbon Emissions

3 out of 6
1. Is there a policy for the brand to minimize, reduce or compensate carbon emissions? Balenciaga implements several measures to reduce its climate footprint, such as energy efficiency measures in its stores (see link, page 85 & 96-97). Source
2. Has the brand (company) disclosed the annual absolute carbon footprint of its 'own operations' (Scope 1 & 2) and has the brand already reduced or compensated 10% of these emissions in the last 5 years? Kering (brand owner of Balenciaga) increased its climate footprint (Scope 1-2) from 123,560 tons of CO2e in 2014 to 135,636 tons of CO2e in 2015. This represents an increase of around 9,8%. But, 123,560 tons of CO2e were compensated in REDD+ programs in Kenya, Brazil and Indonesia in 2015 (see link, "Climate Change 2016 Response”). Source
3. Is at least 50% of the electricity used by the brand (company) generated from renewable resources, such as wind or solar energy? Kering communicates that 24,5% of electricity purchased / generated in 2015 originated from renewable sources. However, its specific share for Balenciaga is not specified clear enough, as well as sources, types and additionality of supply (see link, "Climate Change 2016 Response”). Source
4. Is all the electricity used by the brand (company) generated from renewable resources, such as wind or solar energy? See remark for carbon emissions policy question 3. Source
5. Has the brand (company) set a target to reduce its absolute ‘own operations’ carbon emissions by at least 20% within the next 5 years? Kering does not communicate concrete information on total target reductions for its climate footprint of own operations. Only relative target reductions are specified (see link, "Climate Change 2016 Response”). Source
6. Does the brand (company) have a policy and reports on tangible results to reduce / compensate carbon emissions generated from the production chain (Scope 3)? Kering implements several measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the production chain that is beyond own operations, and reports on greenhouse gas emissions which were caused in its production chain that is beyond own operations (see link, "Climate Change 2016 Response”). Source

Questions about Environmental Policy

5 out of 16
1. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 5% of its volume? Neither Balenciaga nor Kering communicate concrete results on the total use of preferred raw materials, such as organic cotton or recycled polyester. Source
2. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 10% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
3. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 25% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
4. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 50% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
5. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 75% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
6. Does the brand (company) use environmentally 'preferred' raw materials for more than 90% of its volume? See remark for environmental policy question 1. Source
7. Does the brand have a clear and effective policy to avoid the use of leather that originates from cattle farms in deforestated Amazone areas? According to Kering's Leather Guidelines cattle may only be sourced directly or indirectly from farms or groups fully committed to an immediate moratorium on deforestation and that have not engaged in deforestation in the Amazon biome since July 2006. But, its current status is not specified (see link, "Forest 2016 Response”). Source
8. Does the brand (company) have a clear and effective policy to minimize environmental pollution of chromium and other harmful substances from leather tanning processes, e.g. by waste water treatment or by vegetable tanning? Kering communicates that its brands continue the use of a tanning process eliminating the need for metal, but is not clear about the overall impact of this policy concerning specific products. Also, the share of LWG-certified tanneries is not specified (see link, page 102, 117 & 121). Source
9. Is there a policy for the brand (company) to eliminate all hazardous chemicals from the whole lifecycle and all production procedures to make the garments? Kering has pledged to ensure that all hazardous chemicals will be phased out and eliminated from the production by 2020 (see link, page 61 & 109). Source
10. Has the brand (company) eliminated at least one suspect chemical group, such as Phthalates or Per fluorinated chemicals from its entire garment production? Kering does not report whether at least 1 out of 11 suspect chemical groups, such as Heavy Metals or Chlorophenols can be considered as fully phased-out in the entire production chain of Balenciaga products (see link, page 63-66). Source
11. Has the brand (company) eliminated at least three suspect chemical groups, such as Phthalates or Per fluorinated chemicals from its entire garment production? See remark for environmental policy question 10. Source
12. Does the brand (company) have a clear target to phase out PVC in their products, and has the brand already achieved a PVC phase out level of more than 90%? According to the latest consolidated figures as of end of 2015, 99.8% of Kering brands' products are PVC-free. Source
13. Has the brand (company) a clear and effective policy to minimize the use of solvents based chemicals in their shoe production, and has the brand already achieved a level of average max. 40 grams of Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC) emissions per pair of shoes? Kering does not openly communicate a concrete policy to reduce solvent based chemicals in their shoe production. Source
14. Does the brand (company) have clear objectives to minimize the environmental impact of its shipping packaging and carrier bags, by reducing, re-using, recycling and responsible sourcing of packaging materials, and does the brand annually report on these results? Brands at Kering implement measures to minimize the environmental impact of consumer packaging, such as using FSC certified paper materials for their shopping bags. Also, Kering reports a packaging materials footprint of 16,447 tonnes in 2015 (+34% compared to 2014) (see link at next question, page 106). Source
15. Does the brand (company) have clear objectives to minimize waste, by reducing, re-using and recycling, and does the brand annually report the results? Kering implements several measures related to its waste production, such as recycling or re-using raw materials. Also, Kering reports a waste materials footprint of 12,205 tonnes in 2015 (+10.6% compared to 2014 however) (recycling rate at 64,8%). 456 tonnes were hazardous materials or substances (see link, pages 107-109). Source
16. Does the brand (company) encourage the return or re-use of garments? Balenciaga offers its customers the opportunity to make use of its repair service. Source

Questions about Labour Conditions/ Fair Trade

2 out of 14
1. Does the brand (company) have a supplier Code of Conduct (CoC) which includes the following standards: No forced or slave labor, no child labor, no discrimination of any kind and a safe and hygienic workplace? In Kering's Code of Ethics all these standards are mentioned, with reference to the respective ILO Conventions (see link, page 8-9). Source
2. Does this CoC include at least two of the following workers rights: 1. to have a formally registered employment relationship 2. to have a maximum working week of 48 hours with voluntary and paid overtime of 12 hours maximum 3. to have a sufficient living wage? Labour conditions regarding a formally registered employment relationship, working hours and a living wage are not clearly specified in Kering's Code of Ethics (see link, page 8-9). Source
3. Does this Code of Conduct include the right for workers to form and join trade unions and bargain collectively; and in those situations where these rights are restricted under law, the right to facilitate parallel means of independent and free association and bargaining? Freedom of association is mentioned, but nothing found about situations in which this right is restricted by law (see link, page 8). Source
4. Does this labour conditions policy also apply further down the production chains, at least covering the leather production or the animal farms? Kering requires its suppliers to take appropriate measures for the effective application of the principles of its Code of Ethics to its own suppliers (see link, page 8). Source
5. Does the brand (company) have a published list of direct suppliers, that have collectively contributed to more than 90% of the purchase volume? Kering does not provide a significant list of direct suppliers. Source
6. Is the brand (company) a member of a collective initiative that aims to improve labor conditions, or does the brand (company) purchase its supplies from accredited factories with improved labor conditions? Neither Kering nor Balenciaga communicate membership at MSI's such as ETI or FLA or purchasing from accredited suppliers too (see link, page 117-119, and at next question, pages 73-77). Source
7. Do independent civil society organizations like NGO's and labor unions have a decisive voice in this collective initiative or in these certification schemes? See remark for labor conditions policy question 6. Source
8. Is there a policy for the brand (company) for capacity building at the apparel manufacturers for improved labour practices? Kering does not provide concrete results on capacity building measures at its supplying production facilities for improved labour practices. Source
9. Does the brand (company) annually report on the results of its labor conditions policy? Is at least 90% of the brands production volume from apparel manufacturers monitored for labour conditions? Kering communicates that in 2015 69 audits at Balenciaga's suppliers were conducted. But, it remains unclear if at least 90% of the production volume can be considered monitored. Also, reporting on results of its implemented measures to improve labor conditions at Balenciaga's supplying factories is not comprehensive enough (see link, page 116-119). Source
10. Is at least 25% of the production volume from apparel manufacturers approved as socially compliant by independent third parties, such as FWF, GOTS or SA8000? See remark for labor conditions policy question 9. Source
11. Is at least 50% of the production volume from apparel manufacturers approved as socially compliant by independent third parties, such as FWF, GOTS or SA8000? See remark for labor conditions policy question 9. Source
12. Does the brand (company) implement a policy to establish the payment of living wages at its apparel manufacturers? Are at least first living wage payments realised? Kering does not provide concrete information about policy measures to establish the payment of living wages at its direct suppliers. Source
13. Does the brand (company) annually report on the results of its labor conditions policy for the leather, yarn and fabric production phases, including a reasonable overview of the number and region of workplaces covered by the policy in relation to the total production volume? Kering does not report on clear results of its labour conditions policy for the fabric manufacturing phases. Source
14. Are at least 50% of the brand's leather, yarn and fabric production phases approved as socially compliant by independent third parties, such as FLO-Cert, GOTS or SA8000? See remark for labor conditions policy question 13. Source