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MONDAY, MARCH 30, 2015

The Human Cost of Forest Fabrics

Behind the shiny exteriors and glossy magazine advertisements of American fashion brands hides some disturbing truths. Communities like those in Pandumaan-Sipituhuta in Northern Sumatra, featured in the short film below by Handcrafted Films, are being harmed by the production of clothing sold by big name companies like Ralph Lauren, Abercrombie & Fitch, and other companies in RAN’s ‘Fashion 15.’

The clothing we buy is driving the destruction of the forests of Pandumaan-Sipituhuta, and decimating the way the communities there have supported themselves for 17 generations.

Here’s how the destruction of benzoin forests in Indonesia becomes part of our clothing:


We need to tell fashion companies that this sort of destruction is totally unacceptable. Some companies have already stepped up as leaders; H&M, Zara, Stella McCartney and others have already taken action and publically committed to eliminating rainforest destruction from their fabrics.

The Out of Fashion campaign is working for change on the ground in Pandumaan-Sipithuta, and to change the whole system. We need to tell fashion companies that they are responsible for their supply chains, and they must demand change at every level. For our Fashion 15, this means demanding changes from Toba Pulp Lestari (the producer), Sateri (the processor), and Royal Golden Eagle (the company that owns Sateri).

Click here to sign our petition, and to take the first step in ensuring that the clothing you buy isn’t destroying forests and communities  in Pandumaan- Sipithuta.

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  • Mark McCabe
    commented 2016-12-22 11:23:30 -0800
    It would be really nice if this article more clearly explained WHY forests are being destroyed and replaced by (what kind of trees?) plantation forests, what is particularly valuable about the fabrics made from these particular fibers and what the alternatives are or what properties of the fabric could not currently be replicated by other, more sustainable, fibers and what those alternative fibers are.

    There is really very little information here and asking for a huge (and I’m sure very important) change by the industry. :)
  • Jesse Hansell
    commented 2015-04-01 07:56:07 -0700
    If not now, then when?

    The motion picture Avatar came to mind immediately as I watched the video posted here.
    Who do we think we are,
    invading indigenous peoples land
    to further our way of life?

    Are we so greedy & short-sighted
    that we will do absolutely anything
    for money, no matter what the cost?

    (A brilliant quote)
    We do not inherit the earth from our grandparents,
    But rather,
    We borrow it from our grandchildren. ~Anon.
  • Jesse Hansell
    followed this page 2015-04-01 07:50:16 -0700