Our Factory: Denizli, Turkey
Written by Sefton Eisenhart
April 27, 2018
Name: CONTINENTAL CLOTHING
Address: 2 Kısım İbrahim Çallı Cad # 2, Honaz, Denizli, Turkey
Material: 100% Organic Turkish Cotton
What we produce together: Our T-Shirts, Long Sleeves and Hoodies
Number of Workers: 150
Date the team last visited: March 2018
Certifications: Global Organic Textile Standard, OEKO-TEX, REACH, Fair Wear Foundation, BSCI
Why we chose this factory: This factory has extensive experience working with sustainable materials in an ethical and transparent manner. They’ve been an important member of the Fair Wear Foundation since 2006, an organization working to improve workplace conditions in the garment industry. Turkey produces some of the world’s most luxurious organic cotton in the world, and this factory is one of the best in the industry.
Ratio of Worker Reps to Workers: 40 workers to each representative
Collaboration Started: 2017
Owners names: Erkan Kok, Necati Soytekin
Union Representation: Instead of a trade union membership, workers take issues to a workers committee at the factory. The committee is made up of a collection of workers who serve as representatives of their colleagues, bringing any grievances, requests as a committee to management.
- The factory is owned by two childhood best friends who took it over from one of their uncles.
- They’re both serious “foodies.” The workers like to joke that the lunch they are served daily is better than a lot of restaurants in town.
- Turks, Kurds and Syrians all work together at this facility.
- At the dye house, no worker ever touches a chemical.
Step 1: Farm (and ginning facility): We use GOTS certified organic cotton to make our CHNGE products, to avoid all the shit associated with conventional cotton like chemicals and pesticides, linked to cancer and other diseases. Organic cotton saves on water use, keeps waterways clean, and protects the lives of the cotton growers and their families, too. Unlike many other brands, we trace our t-shirts and sweatshirts to the actual field where the cotton was grown.
Step 2: The organic cotton fibers are taken to our spinning facility where they produce only the highest quality yarn. These yarns are then spun into fabrics that meet our quality and production standards. This state-of-the-art spinning facility separates our organic yarns and fabrics from non-organic materials to ensure there is no contamination.
Step 3: At our dyehouse, not one single worker ever touches a chemical. Using only Oeko-Tex and GOTS certified dyes means that chemical use is kept to a minimum and all the processes are bound by stringent European REACH regulations. Wastewater from the dyehouse is cleaned and used again for irrigation, and hot wastewater from operations can be used as heat recovery for energy. Why only use precious resources once, right?
Step 4: Cut and Sew: Our cut and sew facility is GOTS certified meaning they don’t use harmful dyes or chemicals in production AND the rights of workers are protected. Workers elect a committee of their peers to take any issues they have to the factory’s management.
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