Togetherness Window - December 2021.
We believe that RESPONSIBILITY starts with a state of mind. That good design endures and surpasses time. We believe in creating garments that are meant to last a lifetime, to be passed down generations. Our core belief is that the lifecycle of each garment is maximized by designing each piece as a favorite. That quality is a given, not a luxury.
We are engaging our efforts towards a better future, protecting our resources and using creativity to find a way to do so. We believe in respecting each other and the creatures with whom we share our planet. We are dedicated to an endless investment in reaching our goals.
We are not perfect: There are – and will always be – new challenges along the way, which is why it is so essential for all areas of the company to work together seamlessly, especially in this context.
Our common goal? To become the most responsible version of ourselves! We are committed to making better decisions across the company each and every day so that we can continuously improve our social and environmental responsibility.
We can't change tomorrow without starting right now.
Where does the process of environmental responsibility even begin? How does responsible supply chain management work? How do we guarantee social responsibility, and how do we deal with our remaining stock?
The process of environmental responsibility starts at the very beginning of the supply chain with our procurement strategy. What do we want to cover? Which categories do we launch? And how long should the product life cycle be? By answering these questions and creating a product range plan, we can act in an ecologically responsible manner.
We procure raw materials in accordance with the European Union’s REACH Regulation. Our top priority is to ensure that natural resources are used as responsibly as possible. To do so, we are successively reducing surpluses and are already working with budgeted figures when we purchase raw materials. We can only increase the ecological responsibility of our supply chain in the long term if we have high quality, long-lasting collections. On top of this, we are focusing on continuous research and development in this area. We are constantly looking proactively for alternative, responsible and innovative solutions.
It’s all about the network: When selecting our suppliers and manufacturing sites, we make sure they operate in line with the highest possible standards. Our supply chain team works hard to ensure that our partners receive regular announced and unannounced visits, and that every company working with us along the supply chain signs a Code of Conduct that requires environmental and social compliance. Tools such as the Code of Conduct not only ensure that we comply with EU standards for textiles, for example, but that we routinely exceed them because our internal standards are stricter than the law requires from the outset. Our supply chain is also structured in such a way that our production facilities manufacture where the largest proportion of raw materials are sourced. This is another way of keeping the environmental footprint as small as possible at a key step in the supply chain. Geographical proximity to our partners is taken into account for products that are particularly complex, thereby ensuring short transportation routes that are less of an environmental concern.
We highly value – and expect – maximum transparency when working with the partners along our supply chain. We have long and trusting relationships with all our production facilities and with our raw material suppliers. A large in-house team in our atelier checks every single garment and follows it through its development process from sample to finished garment, which allows us to maintain the greatest possible control over our supply chain.
We acknowledge our responsibility for ensuring adherence to human rights, within our sphere of influence. Therefore, as a requirement for doing business with us, we require that all our supply partners observe relevant internationally recognized social and environmental standards, including:
Let’s talk packaging. We are currently in the process of transitioning to new hangers and polybags. We have switched our polybags from EcoPure material to 100% recycled LDPE in the spirit of responsibility. LDPE stands for Low Density Polyethylene, which is much more environmentally friendly and easier to recycle than other plastics. By reducing the thickness of the material, we were also able to save additional plastic material. The polybags are produced at two locations, China and Italy. Thanks to the choice of production sites, we can save on air freight of the polybags to China and internally on manpower in shipping, resulting in total savings of 42.6 metric tons of CO2 per year moving forward.
In addition to polybags, we have also switched our coat hangers to 100% recycled material. Some of the hangers can also be manufactured directly in China, where they are sourced from our suppliers – here, too, we will save 40.9 metric tons of CO2 per year moving forward. To ensure a smooth transition and not create unnecessary waste, the packaging materials that we have been using so far will, of course, be used up first.
Whether switching to digital invoices, LED light bulbs at our HQ and stores, or the introduction of a virtual document management system (DMS) – every day, together, we take another step towards caring for the future.
We think before we print. The digital DMS saves vast amounts of paper and other printing materials by using a digital database to archive and manage all the documents produced at our company. Important documents that need to be in paper form are printed on FSC-certified paper.
We’re going digital. Our marketing materials will be sent out more and more in digital form – and will be available exclusively online at our Virtual Showroom.
We recycle. The existing waste separation systems at our HQ and stores have become as natural as they are essential for the recycling process.
Mobility. We’re moving forward in the field of mobility. A large proportion of our corporate car fleet has already been converted to e-mobility.
We’re working on our green thumb. A celebration of Mother Nature, Dr. Ali Moshiri’s herb garden at the DOROTHEE SCHUMACHER headquarters is designed to enhance our appreciation of the beauty, diversity, and usefulness of nature. The herb garden is a unique meeting point dedicated to promoting our strengths and uniting “wholesome, tasteful, artistic and cultural” aspects. A place full of creativity, originality, and energy – just like us!