Since 2020, the BBC reported that the Xinjiang region of China forces minorities and Uyghurs to do forced labor in the fields of cotton, which represents a fifth of the world’s supply. Also, not only this, but it is used in the global fashion industry. Now Shein, Inditex, Skechers and others are accused of joining the brands that use this material in their garments.
However, what has attracted the most attention is the firm Shein, which is again in the eye of the hurricane after Channel 4 released a documentary about the exploitation of the workers who make its clothes. An investigation of Bloombergin which they analyzed the firm’s garments, and found that the clothing sent to the United States was made with cotton from the controversial Chinese region.
The outlet placed two orders at Shein, looking for items made of cotton. The fibers were then subjected to laboratory tests, which revealed that the carbon, hydrogen and oxygen isotope ratios matched the range samples, meaning the garments were determined to be made from Xinjiang cotton. So far, Shein has not responded to the accusations of Bloomberg.
The United States banned cotton from this region at the beginning of 2021, even Congress extended the veto to all products and raw materials, by applying the Forced Labor Prevention Act. Europe is also seeking a legislative reform to prohibit imports that are related to forced labor.
Other brands accused of using Chinese cotton besides Shein
This would not only affect the Chinese firm, Shein. In mid-2021, the French National Prosecutor’s Office opened an investigation against several fashion companies, including Inditex, Uniqlo, Skechers and SMCP.
Another case involved is that of the H&M group. In 2020, it reported that it was cutting its business relations with suppliers related to Xinjiang. This caused chaos and a boycott of the brand in the Asian country, accompanied by the firms Nike and Inditex. The latter wanted to distance himself from the accusations of his production in the region, but he did not succeed.
Editorial Team The editorial team of EMPRENDEDOR.com, which for more than 27 years has worked to promote entrepreneurship.