What's happened so far
The Natural Cotton case took shape from the impulse of an associate enterprise of TCBL involved in cotton ginning in Greece. It revealed the existence of cotton of EU origin to the TCBL community and promoted its quality. Next, a working group comprising associated TCBL enterprises mapped out all the steps of the value-chain using business software services available to TCBL members:
- providing sustainable cotton seeds to cotton growers
- assisting them in obtaining high quality (long fibres) cotton
- certifying their production
- ginning this cotton
- designing and confectioning cotton clothes
- selling them
This generated a number of collaborative proposals which were put to the working group. After careful consideration the group chose to work together to develop a collection of new products based on a fully traced production chain from the cotton grower to the final product with certified origin and quality of the cotton fibres used (Greek Certified Sustainable Extra-Long Fibres). This step has been implemented and this first collection was produced in June 2017.
This is the first time that the collaborating members of this business case have worked together and had direct contact with those involved in steps further than the immediate previous and next one. It's allowed us to identify new needs of knowledge sharing and new dynamics in working together. The first products of this cooperation have been produced and were on view at the TCBL #2017 Conference in Athens in June.
In parallel, the first steps have been taken to begin a similar case with silk. This will be developed through the cooperation of a Greek silk producer and a Slovenian artist and designer who wants to use the material to create a bespoke range of products.