Executive Briefings

Retailer Primark Says Constantly Looking for Slavery in Its Supply Chain

British budget fashion chain Primark recently said it was constantly on the watch for any slavery in its supply chain while dismissing the idea that low cost meant exploitation.

Paul Lister, head of Primark's ethical trading team, said the retailer known for cheap, high turnover fashion kept its costs down by not spending on advertising and buying in bulk to achieve economies of scale.

After years of facing accusations of using "sweatshops" employing "slave labor" to produce T-shirts for just three pounds ($4), Primark has this year started to talk publicly about what it is doing to ensure its supply chain is ethical.

Lister said Primark's business model was designed to produce low cost goods but he acknowledged the garment supply chain was complicated and the retailer was always looking to spot any issues.

The United Nations' International Labour Organization estimates there are 21 million victims of forced labor globally, with 56 percent in the Asia-Pacific region that is home to many clothes factories used by international brands.

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Paul Lister, head of Primark's ethical trading team, said the retailer known for cheap, high turnover fashion kept its costs down by not spending on advertising and buying in bulk to achieve economies of scale.

After years of facing accusations of using "sweatshops" employing "slave labor" to produce T-shirts for just three pounds ($4), Primark has this year started to talk publicly about what it is doing to ensure its supply chain is ethical.

Lister said Primark's business model was designed to produce low cost goods but he acknowledged the garment supply chain was complicated and the retailer was always looking to spot any issues.

The United Nations' International Labour Organization estimates there are 21 million victims of forced labor globally, with 56 percent in the Asia-Pacific region that is home to many clothes factories used by international brands.

Read Full Article