For us, sustainability has always been part of our values and actions and we approach sustainability in a holistic manner. You could say that sustainability is one of our cornerstones, whether it is about taking care of personnel, reducing the environmental impact, ethical sourcing or safe products. We recognize that there are certain challenge and there are no quick wins or easy solution to solve all the current problems the whole industry is facing, but we are 100% committed to make this world a better place to live.
All in all, sustainability in a very complex topic, often evaluated from three aspects:
(1) environmental responsibility, (2) social responsibility and (3) financial responsibility.
- Environmental responsibility. We consider that the main environmental challenges are related to the restricted possibilities to re-use the thinner pantyhose and use of oil-based polyamide as main material. We aim to address both of these challenges. We strongly feel we make the biggest environmental impact by creating high quality products that last time with proper care. In autumn 2019, we will introduce a new eco-friendly Vogue -product line made of regenerated nylon waste; for example fishing nets and old carpets. Our aim is to increase the share of sustainable materials in the coming collections. We will use 100% FSC certified cardboard in our Vogue packages from 2020 onwards. As other examples of our environmental actions, we purchase only the required quantity to minimize the leftover stock and avoid disposing, we recycle waste at all our offices, we use 100% renewable wind energy when possible and we donate all the proceeds from the sale of plastic bags to cleaning the Baltic Sea.
- Social responsibility. We are committed to increase the well-being of people and we treat all people in our ecosystem with respect. Transparency, trust, honesty as well as fair and equal treatment are some of the values we want to nourish, at our own offices, stores and throughout the supply chain. We have been part of the BSCI-initiative for more than 10 years, even though we recognize that it does not solve all the issues in our supply chain. We have a genuine interest towards the well-being of people who make our products in the factories. Our approach is to use long-term manufacturing partners that share our expectations on quality and sustainability. Many of our suppliers are smaller family-run businesses, just like us. We never e.g. choose a supplier based on the lowest cost only.
- Financial responsibility. We want to increase the financial well-being of our stakeholders. For our shareholders, we want to provide returns on their investments. For our suppliers, we pay fair price for their services and we never e.g. use price-driven auctions to drive down the prices. For our employees, we want to ensure business continuity to support their families. For the society, we want to be a good corporate citizen and pay all taxes.
Our commitments on sustainability
Our commitments on sustainability are built around a framework, guiding our operations.
For us, commitments on sustainability mean tangible actions, and we regularly monitor and update them. Our commitments are:
# 1: We increase the sustainability of our products
We increase the share of more environmentally-friendly products in our product portfolio
- Target: 7% of our Vogue -products in 2019 and 10% in 2020 (pcs)
We increase the use of more environmentally friendly materials in our packaging
- Goal: We use 100% FSC certified cardboard in our Vogue packages by 6/2020, the latest
We improve working conditions in our supply chain
- Objective: the share of BSCI-certified suppliers at least 90% by the end of 2019 (BSCI or equivalent, audited or in process, main partners)
# 2: We help consumers to make more responsible choices
- We increase the awareness of the environmental considerations throughout the product life cycle
- We provide more information about our products and proper care to help extend the life of our products
- We offer alternatives to using plastic bags in our stores
- We donate all the proceeds from the sale of plastic bags to the protection of the Baltic Sea
# 3: We increase the sustainability of our own operations
- We strive to minimize surplus stocks
- We use only 100% renewable electricity whenever possible
- We recycle different materials as much as possible in our own offices and stores
- We do not make unnecessary trips and compensate for CO2 emissions from all flights
- We reduce printing in our own offices by -50% by the end of 2019
We increase the well-being and job satisfaction of our employees
- Goal: satisfaction at an excellent level (average over 4.0, on a 5-step scale)
# 4: We increase the transparency in our operations and actions
- We publish the countries of origin for our products
- We publish our supplier list (main partners and their subcontractors)
- We publish a summary of the materials we use in our products
- We introduce our main suppliers
Product design and manufacturing
All Vogue -products are designed in Nokia, Finland, by our passionate design team. Our sheer hosiery -products are mostly made in Italy and Serbia, while the natural fiber products come mainly from Estonia, Portugal and Turkey.
We believe in producing high-quality socks and hosiery in safe and fair working conditions at all stages. For years, Nanso Group has been working systematically to increase the responsibility in our supply chain. It is important for us to know the origin of our products and to make sure that our products can be used with good conscience, regardless of where the products are manufactured. Also, our strict quality and durability requirements must be met in all the factories.
We work only with a few, carefully-chosen suppliers that are mostly smaller family businesses, just like we are. We strive for long-term partnerships so that we can promote responsibility and ensure the high quality of our products. We visit our partners regularly and emphasize responsibility and transparency in our cooperation. Our suppliers have made environmental investments in their factories, for example equipping their buildings with solar panels and new machinery 50% savings in energy consumption.
We evaluate our suppliers in a holistic manner. When choosing a supplier, we consider many aspects, such as technical capability, size of the company in relation to us, product safety, price, location and their approach to sustainability. All criteria must be at an acceptable level.
We also believe that we can significantly reduce the typical risks arising from price and schedule pressures through our own sourcing practices. We strive to give our partners enough time to produce our products, we never choose a supplier based solely on price, and we never auction our suppliers. To alleviate the risks of neglecting environmental and/or social matters, we do not want to put too much time or cost pressure on our suppliers.
BSCI member since 2008
We want to promote social responsibility throughout our supply chain and have been a member of the BSCI since 2008. Our suppliers are committed to the BSCI's core principles. Suppliers are also assessed through independent audits and their activities are developed over the long term.
As a principle, when a supplier operates in a so-called “high-risk country”, we only cooperate with those suppliers that are already BSCI-audited (or equivalent) or who are initiating the process. We want to be aware of the working conditions in the factories and we also want to commit our partners to continuously develop their social responsibility.
All Nanso Group’s suppliers commit to the BSCI Code of Conduct when we start to co-operate with them. All suppliers operating in a so-called “high-risk countries” are always directed to the BSCI auditing process, with the exception of small individual items. We also consider, at our discretion, other social responsibility assessment systems, if their criteria meet BSCI audit criteria (such as SA8000 or Sedex).
All our suppliers are committed to complying with BSCI policies:
- The Rights of Freedom of Association and Collective Bargaining
- Fair Remuneration
- Occupational Health and Safety
- Special Protection for Young Workers
- No Bonded Labour
- Ethical Business Behaviour
- No Discrimination
- Decent Working Hours
- No Child Labour
- No Precarious Employment
- Protection of the Environment
More information about BSCI: https://www.amfori.org/content/amfori-bsci.
Product safety and chemicals
We monitor the safety of our products and there is a wide list of prohibited substances that we, and all our suppliers, are committed not to use. The list is based on EU REACH chemicals legislation, which prohibits and restricts the use of many chemicals that are harmful to humans and environment. In addition, the list has been supplemented with other harmful substances commonly used in textile production that we do not accept. Our suppliers carry out their own testing procedures and the Finnish Customs also checks the safety of imported products by regularly testing the products.
The design approach culminates in the subtle details and innovations as well as finest yarns to generate the premium quality and high durability. In hosiery products main material is polyamide. In autumn 2019, we introduce a new eco-friendly Vogue -product line made off regenerated nylon waste from example fishing nets and old carpets. By using this new regenerated Nylon, is possible to reduce 80% the global warming impact, compared to virgin nylon. In future there’ll be more and more ready to use -solutions in recycled materials also in this field.
Natural fibers such as cotton, wool, alpaca and cashmere are also essential part of our collection. All our continuous wool articles are mulesing free. We do not use angora fur, down or exotic animal skins in our products at all.