For over 10 years Cotton made in Africa (CmiA) has been working with people along the textile value chain - from the field to the point of sales. Together, they are working towards a situation where a sustainability strategy spawns a culture of sustainable consumption. All the more reason to give them the stage in the 2015 annual report for the 10th anniversary of the Foundation. The interviewed CmiA partners talk about challenges and opportunities in connection with an issue which could not be more urgent or more topical in view of environmental disasters and refugee crises.
Cotton made in Africa was established in 2005 with the aim of combining sustainability and profitability and thereby offering both smallholders and companies successful sustainable perspectives on their economic activities to date. The flight of hundreds of thousands of people to Europe and the increasing pressure on our ecosystems demonstrate that CmiA is still relevant after its foundation by Dr. Michael Otto in 2005. Sustainably produced raw materials are becoming more and more important for CmiA partner Stefano Caccia from the company Denim de l’Ile (DDI) in Mauritius which makes denim products for international brands. “Sustainability is currently the most important subject in the denim industry. Everyone is rethinking their production process and supply chain in relation to this subject,” he said. “CmiA is a great help to us in this respect. Demand from customers is increasing, we have an advantage over our competitors, and all at fair prices. We are delighted to see how sustainability is finally becoming “sexy”.”
In the financial year of 2015, 30 textile companies and brands together paid over EUR 1,000,000 as license fees in order to be supplied with CmiA cotton. Revenues from partnership contributions went up due to the growing worldwide network of CmiA partners. The money is used to finance the work of CmiA in the project regions.
Around 750,000 smallholders have now received agricultural, social and business management training in close cooperation with their partner, the Competitive African Cotton Initiative (COMPACI), and the cotton companies in Africa. This training is enabling them to achieve lasting effects through the increase in their yield and income. In addition, local projects in environment, empowerment of women, education and health will be funded through the new CmiA Community Cooperation Program. This was launched to mark the 10th anniversary of the Foundation with an endowment of 1 million euro from Dr. Michael Otto.
The annual report is available to download free of charge in German and English here.