We’re proud to use responsibly sourced cotton
The world currently produces 26 million tonnes of cotton every year. Eight countries – India, China, USA, Brazil, Pakistan, Turkey, Uzbekistan and Mexico – account for more than 85% of its total production. However, according to the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) only 22% of this figure is from sustainable cotton (1). With this in mind, how can consumers and retailers be sure the cotton used in products is truly sourced in a way that doesn’t damage our environment? here Richard Naylor, Sustainable Development Director at Hypnos, explains.
Why is it important to look at responsibly sourcing cotton?
“Cotton is a beautiful plant-based fibre that’s natural, renewable, biodegradable, soft to the touch and great at taking heat and moisture away from the body. That’s why it is the perfect material for clothing and products that are close to our bodies, such as beds and bedding. But its popularity means it’s not always been produced in a responsible way.
“Growing cotton is a thirsty business, on top of this, the majority of cotton is grown in countries facing water scarcity – which The World Economic Forum has identified as one of the top ten global risks to society over the next ten years.
“As a company committed to providing comfort with integrity, Hypnos has always sought to be a responsible manufacturer. We appreciate that the operations of our suppliers along the value chain have an impact on their communities, which is why we look at every element of our supply network. Naturally, as cotton is desirable and has so many great properties, we wanted to find the best solution for sourcing our cotton, based on environmental, social and economic sustainability.
“In 2019, we started a partnership with the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) and other enterprises to ensure our new Origins Collection of sustainable and supremely comfortable mattresses, took a responsible approach to sourcing cotton and all its materials. This cotton is used in our naturally fire-resistant fabrics (created without the use of synthetic FR chemicals) to create comfy sleep surfaces and the soft cotton fillings for our beds.
What is the Better Cotton initiative?
Better Cotton Initiative is a not-for-profit organisation that exists to make global cotton production better for the people who produce it, better for the environment it grows in and better for the sector’s future. Through BCI and its partners, farmers receive training on how to use water efficiently, care for the health of the soil and natural habitats, reduce use of the most harmful chemicals and provide fair working conditions. BCI farmers implementing this system are licensed to sell Better Cotton.
Cotton Origins Collection
“Better Cotton is sourced via a system of mass balance so it is not physically traceable to end products. But this mass balance system encourages wider demand for sustainable cotton, encouraging farmers to adopt sustainable practices and become licensed. Hypnos has already managed to make sure that 56% of the cotton for its fabrics alone are sourced through the Better Cotton Initiative and is committed to making this 100% by 2030 through facilitating change with all its suppliers.
“You can often tell the quality of materials used in a product from a simple eye test, however it is a lot harder to tell whether a product has been sustainably sourced. The natural colour of the unbleached cotton cover helps to visibly highlight the credentials of the Origins collection that, in addition to responsibly sourced cotton, also uses only certified traceable wool from British Red Tractor assured farms. This industry-first partnership ensures fair payment to farmers committed to standards of land management and animal welfare, for a beautiful and renewable fibre ideal for bedding.
This level of third-party certification with the Origins Collection and wider environmental credentials means that Hypnos can offer customers both luxurious and sustainable mattresses that they can sleep soundly in the knowledge that the bed they are snuggling up in has comfort with integrity and hasn’t cost the earth.”
(1) ICAC- Cotton: World Statistics 2019 and Textile Exchange compilation of total global fiber volume data (see “Global Fiber Market)