Informa Is Helping Make Sustainability Fashionable in the Trade Show Industry

KATHY MONTE, SENIOR EDITOR
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NEW YORK — Trade shows in the fashion vertical that are striving to be more sustainable have a new report that can help them on their path. The recently released 2022 Sustainability Report: The Road to 2030  from Sourcing Journal provides invaluable insights as to how far the apparel industry has come; where the potholes and pitfalls still lie; and how global policies, emerging market data and consumer trends can impact business decisions and operations. 

One of the prevailing themes in the report is the importance of collaboration. Working together with a common goal in mind is the only way to enact lasting change, according to the report. Another focus is the importance of circular and regenerative materials.  

“As the industry looks to reduce its carbon footprint and decrease the amount of harm caused to the environment by its processes, tracking and accountability have become paramount. The first step for many is to establish a baseline and set goals from there. This usually includes targets for cutting Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions,” the report states.  

To jumpstart sustainability efforts, the Global Fashion Agenda and the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change have formed a new alliance to gather industry stakeholders to fulfill the Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action.  

Related. EIC Announces Inaugural 2022 Online Sustainability Certification  

Informa Markets, which produces fashion events including MAGIC, COTERIE, PROJECT and SOURCING at MAGIC, is heeding the call. Kelly Helfman, President, Informa Markets Fashion, stresses the importance of getting it right. “As leaders in the fashion industry, it is our responsibility to make sure we are doing our part to support the health of the environment by accelerating education and resources for our industry,” she said.  

Informa has committed to ambitious goals over the next five years as part of its FasterForward program with the aim being to become a zero waste and net zero carbon business by 2030. They include the goal to become carbon neutral as a business and across all its products by 2025. In addition, it is focused on embedding sustainability inside 100% of all its brands by 2025. It is also going to multiply the positive impact it can create by helping connect and inform those who struggle to access knowledge and networks.  

To help Informa achieve these goals it has retained a third-party company Hey Social Good, which helps vet and verify brands it works with to gauge where they are on their sustainability journey. Informa then shares this information with retailers it works with to demonstrate what a brand is doing and where they can improve. “With the help of Hey Social Good we celebrate wins, even if they are small, and can really identify what certain collections are doing,” Helfman explained.  

Informa’s commitment takes on heightened importance in light of the criticism the fashion industry has taken for causing pollution. “The fashion industry has to quicken its strategies, as manufacturers and brands are some of the biggest offenders negatively impacting the environment,” Helfman said. We have a huge responsibility to make a difference and drive change in our industry. “We will accomplish this through education, strategic partnerships, transparency, the open sharing of information, and playing our part to accelerate this. It’s not just walking the walk; it’s talking the talk.” 

Reach Kelly Helfman atKelly.helfman@informa.com