Geneva, Switzerland, 18 January 2024 – The fashion industry is witnessing a pivotal moment with the release of sector-specific circularity metrics by the CTI Fashion Initiative, a collaborative effort led by WBCSD, VF Corporation and Deloitte, with support from the VF Foundation. Launched today at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, these tailored metrics are poised to redefine how circularity is assessed within the fashion and textiles value chain and help rally companies around common targets.
At present, less than half of discarded clothes find their way to reuse or recycling, with a mere 1% transformed into new garments. To truly scale up a circular economy in fashion, there is a pressing need for a standardized framework for measuring circularity to drive accountability and incentivize change. The CTI Fashion Initiative addresses this challenge by leveraging one of the most widely used circularity assessment frameworks globally, the Circular Transition Indicators (CTI), developed by WBCSD.
CTI provides a transparent, quantitative, and comparable framework for measuring circular performance. It helps companies evaluate risks, identify effective actions to enhance circularity and understand the impact of their circularity strategies on their sustainability goals.
The CTI Fashion Initiative introduces a tailored suite of circular metrics for companies operating within the fashion industry. These metrics can help businesses drive change by:
- Defining circularity roadmaps and measuring progress based on credible quantitative baselines.
- Driving strategic decision-making and planning cycles on benefits and trade-offs of different circularity strategies.
- Providing a clear view of sustainability impacts—whether on climate or nature—and underscoring the tangible outcomes of circularity initiatives.
- Promoting accountability and transparency with a foundation in quantitative measures and supporting corporate disclosure efforts.
“This initiative marks a pivotal shift toward industry-wide alignment. WBCSD’s Circular Transition Indicators deliver a credible metric system to drive accountability, unlock value and operationalize circularity across the fashion and textile value chain,” said Diane Holdorf, Executive Vice President at WBCSD. “Harmonized standards and metrics demonstrated through best practices will catalyze transformation in the fashion industry toward circularity.”
“The Circular Transition Indicators are enabling us to speak a common language around Circularity, manage against an aligned direction and measure progress through industry wide KPIs,” said Jeannie Renne-Malone, VP Global Sustainability, VF Corporation. “Now, VF can merge its current approach to Circularity with the CTI framework that aligns with upcoming regulatory requirements. The framework helps us more systematically link Circularity work to established goals in Climate, Nature and Resource Use.”
“The VF Foundation is committed to joining others who share a vision of advancing sustainability in the fashion industry,” said Gloria Schoch, Executive Director at The VF Foundation. “WBCSD’s CTI platform is a promising, transformative accelerator that aims to bring the industry together as it collectively embraces a more circular future.”
“Scaling-up circularity is a challenge for many fashion organizations worldwide. The lack of comparable metrics makes performance reviews of circularity initiatives highly unstructured. This reduces the opportunity for data-driven decision-making and for the creation of a circular ecosystem with transparent communication,” said Giovanni Faccioli, Senior partner Deloitte, Fashion & Luxury Sector. “CTI for Fashion establishes a pathway to change this paradigm by identifying clear processes to quantify circularity for fashion organizations. This sector guidance is a first step to ensure that circularity can be transparently discussed in fashion and help initiate collaboration across the value chain.”
The CTI Fashion Initiative calls upon industry stakeholders to embrace the sector-specific metrics for positive change. By integrating these indicators, businesses can steer their operations toward a more circular and sustainable future while upholding profitability.