About Nukleus

Sunday, 28 September 2014

HEART OF NUKLEUS - NEW BEGINNINGS


Sometimes it’s hard to believe that a better world is possible. That business can really make a difference and that anything other than selfish motivations of personal gain are a reality in commerce.

At Nukleus we are constantly striving to implement the values of justice, caring for the environment and improving living conditions. Which is why we have chosen to share our latest initiative…with the rollout of our new HEART range.

After a careful selection process, including visiting India to meet with various yarn from organic cotton providers, we chose Super Spinning Mills (SSML) , based in South India.

They have a professional management team and their core activities : spinning and agriculture, including their sustainable cotton programme, demonstrate a powerful commitment to social responsibility.

Meet the SSML team


Nukleus pays a premium, above market rate for their organic cotton. This helps fund community outreach work.

SSML, our new partners, actively reach out to farmers in Salem, one of South India’s poorest districts, as part of their reaching the unreached initiative.


Village life in India


The yarn from SSML goes to create our new HEART range.

WHAT WE LIKE ABOUT SSML* a well-thought out organic policy featuring:

* biodiversity enhancement
* soil improvement by encouraging biological activity
* integration of different farming systems - horticulture, animal husbandry and forestry
* ‘healthy use’ of soil and water, minimising agricultural pollution
* farmer training programme
* encouraging good labour policy and avoiding child labour in farming
How can I get a better life for my family?


RENEWABLE ENERGY
As part of their holistic approach to agricultural production, SSML use seven windmills and also biogas. One unit is 100% fuelled by renewables.

FARMER TRAINING
With the relentless promotion of unsustainable chemical based agriculture, farmers have lost some of their traditional knowledge about sustainable cultivation.

With organic cotton we grow food crops too


SUSTAINABLE COTTON PROGRAMME

SSML have a Farmers Field School which educates farmers in soil health, conservation and water management…as well as the latest farming techniques. Field training, with frontline demonstration, shows farmers the essentials of vermicomposting, biopesticide preparation and community composting.


Life is simple, we work hard


MAKING IT HAPPEN
SSML are actively focused on helping farmers throughout the entire cotton life cycle.

* supplying subsidised cotton seed
* supplying free biofertilizers
* helping farmers to market their rotational crops
* farmer training in sustainable agricultural methods
* giving farm weeders to farmers
* direct purchase of the cotton at premium prices

WORKING WITH NGOS
As well as helping farmers to gain social, economic and cultural power, SSML also organises medical and eye checkups for farmers, including free check-ups and medicine. 

Like Nukleus, SSML, believes in justice and sustainability, as well as profit.

We are proud to be working with them in the production of our new organic cotton products.


Educating future generations - not working on the farm

Saturday, 16 August 2014

7 FUN AND EASY WAYS TO GREEN YOUR LIFE


by guest blogger Pamela Nowicka

A lot of people want to do something to ‘help’ the environment. Maybe they’re concerned about what’s in their food, toiletries or cosmetics. Malaysians and other Asians, as relatively new entrants into the consumerism fray are very much at the mercy of TNCs (Trans National Corporations).

In Europe and the US people have legislation on labelling, public debates on GMOs, and local action on everything from road-building programmes, to fracking,  to safer roads for cyclists. 

In south east Asia, with its cultural tendency to deference to authority and not 'making trouble' ordinary people are largely unaware of issues.

AND NOWHERE IS THIS MORE CLEAR THAN ON AWARENESS OF ENVIRONMENTAL ISSUES...

WHAT'S 'GREEN'?

Many south east asians idolise the West and aspire to their (wildly inaccurate and rose-tinted view) of the western lifestyle.

There's an innocent belief that if a big name brand, says something, it's true.

Notorious brands like Nestles are quoted approvingly by newpapers as experts on health and nutrition. A recent 'health' piece quoted the brand at length, with product placement pictures of sugar-laden Milos being drunk by kids in school uniform. 

Why would the editor of the publication publish this kind of propaganda? 

And why would the public accept it?


BEING GREEN IS AN ATTITUDE TO LIFE...
...understanding the issues and taking responsibility.

A hilltop being mutilated for housing projects means irreplaceable birds, trees and insects being destroyed forever.

More roads mean more pollution, more deaths and injuries, and more environmental destruction.

Wasting water means water shortages...soon.

Here are some ways to create a new and genuinely greener lifestyle, enjoy your life, and get fit and healthy.



1 EDUCATE YOURSELF!
You’re an adult. With a responsible job and kids. Yet what you know about biodiversity could be written in one Tweet. Ditto GMOs, food security, climate change (duh, ‘yes, it is hotter than when I was a kid’ doesn’t really cut it.)

If you buy a new car, smart-phone or shop online for a flight, you do research. You can do the same to find out about ecosystems, TNCs like Monsanto , GMO cotton’s impact on Indian farmers...anything.

Get Facebook feeds from PAN  (Pesticide Action Network) Asia l, Singapore or KL Green Drinks, Greenpeace International...

2 THINK, WALK, PRIORITISE
Money, career, A place to live, and family are important.

But if you want to buy a new house or condo, what happened to the land and biodiversity what was there before the new house/condo went up? (Hint: it’s not there any more).

Does this matter? 

Yes, it's a serious problem. Water systems, weather systems, food systems - even the air we breathe - are all dependent on sufficient green space. More building = more environmental problems.


Protect green spaces and use only older properties.

More roads = more traffic, deaths, pollution.
Get out of that car and walk, cycle or take public transport. You'll get fit too!


3 UNDERSTAND FOOD - GO TO A WORKSHOP ON COMMUNITY FOOD GROWING AND COMPOSTING
Don't  know what GMOs are? Google it?
A blank slate on ecosystems? Google it?
Think none of this is relevant to your life or family...? What about the impacts of climate change on food production, cost and availability?
Learn how to grow your own veggies, fruit and herbs.
Composting keeps organic matter out of landfill, too.
So you save money AND the planet.



You now have a firm grip of the concept of ecocide - the destruction of  planetary ecosystems by human activity. Well done! Unlike the average citizen, zonked out by ajinomoto laced meat, and zoned out in a haze of keep head down/make money,  you have decided not to be a sheep. You have Googled, and your Facebook feeds keep you updated on food, health, the US-sized plastic island in the Pacific Ocean and Fukushima. You understand that the earth is finite, and being used up scarily fast; you understand that the planet needs a paradigm shift to survive...and you are determined to be part of that shift.

4 SEE WHAT’S HAPPENING IN YOUR NEIGHBOURHOOD
Trees being chopped down? More investment properties being built? Roads being widened?

Maybe it's time you got together with some neighbours and friends to talk about this.

Industrialised ‘development’ (land speculation) and the neoliberal doctrine of consumerism is killing the planet.

If you want a future for yourself and your kids, act now, before it's too late.



5 SWITCH OFF THE TV - CREATE COMMUNITY
You join or start a group. You go to a talk or organise one or give one yourself. Or what about a film screening?

So many topics - veganism, food security, blood diamonds, blood bricks, gaps in society, biodiversity, overfishing the oceans, livability, growing your own food.

This  is important stuff for future generations and a liveable planet.

6 CELEBRATE WITH A VEGAN FEAST
Factory farming and consuming animal products is cruel. It destroys the environment, is highly polluting and adds huge amounts of climate change gases to the atmosphere.

You want to chat about starting a community food garden, recycling, reusing and upcycling.

If you want to meet your friends and celebrate your new-found awareness about starting a community food garden, recycling, reusing and upcyclingwith a delicious vegan feast.






Find a vegan (no animal products at all - no dairy, eggs, honey) stall, cafe or restaurant and eat and chat to your heart’s content. Treat yourself. You deserve it!

7 BE GREEN, HEALTHY, FIT AND SAVE MONEY

Being green is a whole life thing.

You eat vegan and cycle or walk to work.

You’re business helps improve people’s lives and is eco-friendly.

You understand about climate change, deforestation and palm oil.

You spend time doing things you like with people you like.

You’ve switched off the telly and have time to enjoy quiet time, watching the clouds drift by, petting your cat or taking your dog for a run in the park.

You’re engaged with life, not a passenger.

You feel peaceful and proud of the journey you’ve taken, about who you are, your values and your legacy.

Life is never problem-free, but now you are part of the solution...walking lightly on this precious planet...not destroying it.






Nukleus is proud to welcome guest blogger and environmentalist, Pamela Nowicka. The views expressed are her own, and not necessarily that of Nukleus.

Find out more on Facebook: GoGreenPenang and LivingtheDreamonaBudget.

Saturday, 31 May 2014

DO YOU WORRY ABOUT THE IMPACT YOUR PURCHASES ARE HAVING ON PEOPLE AND THE PLANET? HERE’S SOME GOOD NEWS...

Can Business be a Force for Good?
Nukleus CEO, CW Tan, is passionate that it can. “Giving is good business...doing what really matters. People feel good when they give and if they see that a brand is giving back to the community, they will become brand evangelists and loyal customers.”

Nukleus Tees For Him 'n' Her


Brand With a Mission Empowering Customers and Employees
And giving back is not just a powerful way of connecting with customers. Employees of a brand for good also feel empowered. “Their loyalty increases. They want to work for a brand with a mission,” says Tan.

A Powerful Message That Attracts the Media
Other stakeholders, like investors, suppliers and the media also find the concept of a business which gives back attractive. Nukleus has featured in numerous newspaper articles, and TV shows, and CW Tan has been invited to speak at events and conferences to share to Nukleus message of giving back.

Role Models in Success...and Giving
The business giving back model has a number of notable successes...from the organic cotton US brand PACT to Tom’s Shoes...who give a pair of shoes to needy people for each pair bought by a paying customer. “This 1:1 model is very beautiful,” reflects Tan, “more like a charity than a business. But Tom’s is a successful, profit-making business.”



The TOMS Story - Another Business Giving Back
TOMS Shoes was founded by Texan, Blake Mycoskie. Described as Founder and Chief Shoe Giver of TOMS, Mycoskie came up with the One for One business model by which a person in need is helped with every product purchased.

The idea came to Mykoskie when he was travelling in Argentina in 2006, and saw children growing up without shoes. His solution to the problem was simple, yet revolutionary: to create a for-profit business that was sustainable and not reliant on donations.

But Not Only Shoes...
During the first five years, TOMS successfully provided shoes for children in need. But Blake, having recognized other vital needs during his travels around the world, realised that One for One® could be applied to more than shoes. He developed the idea for TOMS Eyewear in which for every pair of eyewear purchased, TOMS would help give sight to a person in need. One for One®.

Giving Shoes, Sight and Water
TOMS Shoes has provided over 10 million pairs of shoes to children since 2006, and TOMS Eyewear has restored sight to over 175,000 since launching in 2011. In 2014, TOMS Roasting Company was founded with the mission to provide clean water to developing communities with the purchase of premium coffee.


Corporate Responsibility at TOMS®
TOMS website highlights the role of Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) in the company. CSR provides focus on the environmental and social impacts of our products and operations, responsible giving and employee life. We offer shoes with sustainable and vegan materials including natural hemp, organic cotton, and/or recycled polyester. All of our shoe boxes are made from 80% recycled post-consumer waste and are printed with soy ink.

And, as With Nukleus, the Supply Chain is Key
TOMS shoes are made in China, Ethiopia and Argentina. We are aware of the challenges associated with overseeing a global supply chain and our global staff actively manages and oversees our suppliers and vendors to ensure that our CSR standards are upheld.

We also define appropriate business practices for our employees and hold them accountable for complying with our policies, including the prevention of slavery and human trafficking within our supply chain.

At the TOMS flagship store in Southern California, our team is working hard to integrate environmentally friendly practices into both the built environment and its day-to-day operation.

At TOMS®, giving is our DNA and has been from the start! Giving will always be core to our work as a responsible company.


Not Just the Supply Chain, But Employees are Highly Valued
At TOMS® we invest in our employees. We provide training for our employees business and leadership topics.  We provide a variety of health, dental, medical and emplyees assistance benefits as well as paid medical and family leave. We also offer Paid Time Off and a variety of fitness and wellness classes.
Nukleus Organic Tee

The Gift That Keeps on Giving...
CW Tan has been closely following the TOMS model. “His business model impressed me. (http://www.toms.com/about-toms#corporateResponsibility) Instead of relying on unsustainable donations, he’s found a way to generate a sustainable income. And the brand has come up very quickly. Instead of spending tons of money on advertising and promotion, say, at the Superbowl, or giving money to Tiger Woods to promote their products, they invest their budget into people and kids.

Giving to Those in Need
“It’s a form of advertising and promotion, but it uses the power of social media instead of TV ads and celebrity endorsement. Form the business point of view it makes complete sense. Why should I pay a mega sportsperson loads of money when we can give shoes, or coffee or underwear to people who need it? I’d love to have Nukleus doing that. Perhaps we could have a particular T-shirt collection and the proceeds would be given to a  cotton-growing village.

Building the Brand Through Sustainable Giving
“Using the power of consumer purchases to create sustainable, continuous giving...if the whole business community was doing this, how wonderful this planet would be!” says Tan.
“But if you’re going to do this, you must do it honestly and with integrity. If you’re not being honest the whole thing will backfire on the brand...and reputations built over years can be damaged overnight.”

A Growing Global Movement
Like TOMS, and other individuals and businesses, Nukleus is part of a growing global movement which is seriously seeking to make business more environmentally friendly and socially just. Nukleus is proud to be part of this revolutionary model of giving back and global stewardship. Above all, we respect and value our loyal fans, customers, employees and associates across the planet.




With your continued help and support, this small brand with a big heart, can grow and create more positive changes for people and the environment.

Tuesday, 29 April 2014

8 THINGS EVERY PARENT NEEDS TO KNOW ABOUT CHILDREN'S RISK OF TOXINS...AND WHAT YOU CAN DO ABOUT IT

image/GoGreenPenang/Pamela Nowicka

Every parent wants to do their best for their children. But how do you make those important choices? How do you factor in the potential benefits to your child in what you do for them? Nukleus has extensively researched this important issue...and we were concerned about what we discovered...

YOUNGER...AND MORE VULNERABLE
According to Pesticides and You, Beyond Pesticides/National Coalition Against the Misuse of Pesticides
1) children are more susceptible to asthma and other respiratory problems.
2) in terms of food, children are more susceptible to environmental toxins than adults.)
image/GoGreenPenang/Pamela Nowicka
3) weight for weight, children eat more food and drink more water than adults, so they take in more pesticides and toxic chemicals relative to body weight.
4) their organ systems are still developing, so are more vulnerable and less able to detoxify hazardous chemicals.

BUT HOW DOES THIS EFFECT THE CLOTHES THEY WEAR?....CHILDREN’S SKIN ABSORBS MORE THAN ADULTS
Children are smaller than adults and so have a larger surface area to body mass ratio. The WHO’s (World Health Organisation) report Children Are Not Little Adults, says that children have a higher proportion of skin to body size. This means they have a greater ability to absorb substances through the skin than adults.

BABIES AND TODDLERS HAVE PROPORTIONATELY TWO TO THREE TIMES MORE SKIN AREA
Babies have a surface area to volume ratio three times that of adults and in toddlers the ratio is twice that of adults. Also, children tend to have more skin exposed and more cuts, abrasions and rashes than adults; this could easily lead to increased dermal absorption as a proportion of body weight.



WINDOWS  OF VULNERABILITY
Children are often at a different and increased risk from environmental hazards. Their developing organs have “early windows of great vulnerability” during which exposure to toxins can cause great damage. These have no parallel in adult physiology and create unique risks for children exposed to hazards. During these early years, exposure to even mild chemical irritants can have significant effects on respiratory development.

AND EVEN ‘INERT’ INGREDIENTS IN PESTICIDES CAN CAUSE PROBLEMS...

8) Glycophosate (Round-up): Glycophosate is one of the most commonly used pesticides. Exposure to glycophosate can cause asthma-like symptoms and breathing difficulty. Studies have linked “inert” ingredients in Round-up, to pneumonia, excess fluid in the lungs, and damage to mucous membrane tissues and the upper respiratory tract.

image/GoGreenPenang/Pamela Nowicka
image/GoGreenPenang/Pamela Nowicka
BUT MOST PARENTS ARE NOT AWARE OF THESE  FACTS AND HOW THEY CAN EFFECT THEIR CHILDREN!
SO WHAT CAN PARENTS DO TO SAFEGUARD THEIR CHILDREN FROM THE TOXIC SOUP IN THEIR CLOTHES?

THE NATURAL THERAPY PRACTITIONER
Local mum and cranial sacral therapy practitioner, Ms Mianjoo has two children, Qing Yun, 9, and his sister Huian, 3. ‘I know about issues like GMOs and pesticides in cotton because I lived in the UK. Public awareness in Europe is much higher compared with Malaysia. I understand the way they treat the cotton - bleaching it to make it white,dyeing and using chemicals in the factory, growing the cotton using so many pesticides which drain into the water sources for the local community...

‘I’m mainly concerned about the producers and the environment, though. I would go for organic cotton if it was available, but here it’s difficult. Even in the UK you have to go to special shops. It’s not readily available for the consumer.’

PINK...AND FLOWERS...SOMETHING BEAUTIFUL
‘Cost is not so much an issue’, continues, Ms Mianjoo, ‘if it’s a luxury and a privilege, I’d think twice, but if it’s only ten to twenty percent more expensive, that’s fine for me. But I don’t want vey plain, or brown. Can it be pink? With flowers? Something beautiful? Why is organic dull and brown and plain?’

THE EXPAT MOMMA
An expat from the US, Laurel Stelzer, mother of Miles, 4 and Hazel, 2, has a blog, Penang Momma, offering hints and tips for expats. ‘I understand why, from an environmental perspective, people want to avoid chemicals for children and why they might choose organic cotton.’

She mulls it over. ‘Once it’s harvested, it’s very processed, probably quite a lot of chemicals unless it’s organic...I’m going to talk myself into buying! But I don’t really know what kind of impact it would have, or personal benefit to the child. And I hadn’t even thought about buying organic cotton underwear. I didn’t know it was available here. I rarely go to malls. There was a place in Gurney where I got a few things, but it’s not like I need to put my newborn in organic clothes...’

WHAT IS THE SOLUTION?
Nukleus is always seeking to improve our product range. As we have become aware of children’s vulnerability to environmental toxins, we have specially created a new range of organic cotton innerwear for boys and girls aged 5-12 years old.

New Oganic Chlidren's Range from Nukleus

Colourful and competitively priced, the innerwear, is available from ALL BMS OUTLETS NATIONWIDE AS WELL AS IE ORGANIC (PULAU TIKUS AND BAYAN BARU) AND JOY EARTH RETAIL SHOP.

Nukleus, the small brand with the big heart, caring for you, your children and the planet.
 

Monday, 31 March 2014

FROM 'SHALLOW' TO SUSTAINABLE, A CEO'S JOURNEY


Nukleus CEO CW Tan opens his heart on the learnings and challenges that come with growing a sustainable brand.

At the beginning even we didn’t fully understand how to deal with a sustainable brand,” he admits. “Our idea was just to use organic cotton and then give some money away to charities like WWF(Worldwide Fund for Nature). It was fairly shallow.”

But a meeting with WWF Malaysia changed that. WWF Malaysia explained the principles of sustainability: that it was an end to end process, from conceptualising the product, sourcing the materials, manufacturing, packaging, transportation and product disposal. “Every part of the value chain has implications for the environment, and that’s what we attempt to address with Nukleus,” observes Tan.

Following the meeting with WWF Malaysia, which happened just before Nukleus was due to launch, and with his head spinning with new concepts like ‘end to end’ and ‘cradle to grave’ sustainability, CW went back to the drawing board.

We decided to make an effort to understand all the environmental implications along the value chain. We delayed the launch by nine months because we’d decided to do it the right way,” he recalls.

CW’s journey of understanding sustainability was mirrored in Nukleus. Everything from selecting materials to production, had environmental implications. Nukleus is guided by the Global Sustainability Criteria laid down by WWF worldwide. “We’re not 100% but we’re close. For example, we’re organic but not Fairtrade certified, because of the cost for getting Fairtrade auditing...”

CW sees his brand’s journey to sustainability as one of continuous learning and improvement. “We’re not perfect, but we’re committed. We comply with Oeko-tex Standard 100 because it has the highest standard for human ecological safety for many processes. All our components comply with this, from fabric dyeing, to the elastic, to the labels. All the issues that are raised in the Greenpeace report, Toxic Threads...if brands adhered to this standard, the toxicity problems would not be an issue. ”
He cites the SGS test report carried out by an independent Taiwanese test centre, which has audited Nukleus products in order to demonstrate in a transparent and non-partisan way, that the claims made about the products, are, in fact true. “One of the main issues is azo dyes, and Greenpeace is highlighting that.”

Our packaging is Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified, the highest global standard for responsible forest management, which, among others, takes into account whether the tree cutting is harming the environment, biodiversity, what kind of chemicals are used. It’s a German standard and very stringent, universally accepted as the gold standard.”

All the printing on the boxes is done with soya ink, so the packaging is free of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), which produce fumes detrimental for health and which also contribute to ozone depletion.
There’s still more that we can do,” observes Tan, “like transportation and the carbon footprint. The key is to be honest. We’re not perfect. We’re learning all the time, but we are committed. I guess that’s the main difference between us and other players. We apply the sustainability concept as an end to end process. It’s a lifecycle process to create a truly green and sustainable brand.”


Monday, 24 February 2014

GROWING A SUSTAINABLE BRAND IN ASIA. NUKLEUS CEO CW TAN SHARES THE BLOOD, SWEAT, TEARS AND INSPIRATION

Nukleus CEO CW Tan

Sustainability, ‘green’ and ‘eco’ businesses are still not mainstream, even in Europe and the US. In Asia, they are even more of a novelty, with consumers, and potential customers,  still largely unaware of how to create a healthier lifestyle - for themselves, their families and the planet - by consuming less and more ethically.

But this hasn’t stood in the way of Nukleus CEO, Cheng Woi (CW) Tan. A man with a mission, and a vision, he is determined to bring sustainable basics and innerwear from Penang to the world. And he’s confident that the Asian consumer is waking up to the hazards of toxic innerwear. ‘The number one challenge in Asia is market acceptance of the importance of healthy and safe innerwear,’ he observes. ‘In the US and Europe it’s different.’


Tan is concerned that in SE Asia, although consumers may be aware of environmental issues, they are still very ‘price driven’ when it comes to purchasing items. According to a recent Neilson survey, in Malaysia, 80% of consumers say they support green products, but, according to Tan, ‘when it comes to parting with dollars, it’s a different story - their actions can be quite different!’

But Tan refuses to be put off by this. ‘The big challenge for Nukleus is that our product needs awareness and education...and that doesn’t happen overnight. Then we have to fight against many brands using chemical cotton. Unless consumers are very savvy, they tend to buy branded international products, which may be cheaper than us.’


To deal with these issues, CW has a multi-pronged approach.

First, focusing on being a niche player in the organic/eco sector, and working on consolidating and expanding this market.

Secondly, he has a long term approach, appreciating that taking on the mainstream is a lengthy process.

Key to success is negotiating and leveraging the supply/demand side of the value chain. So long as the demand side (customer base) is relatively small, this weakens the negotiating power with the suppliers. In order to shift from conventional cotton to organic, farmers need to grow cotton for three years without chemical contamination. “For the group we visited last year, it’s a big challenge to go for three years without an income,’ explains CW.

Finally, there are issues of raising standards further down the supply chain in terms of processing and dyeing yarns. ‘If we can provide big orders, then it becomes much easier to convince our supply chain to make the switch to organic textile processing methods’.
CW Tan with farmers at an organic cotton farm at the village of Nava Sudamara, Gujarat, India















As in any developing business, this gestation stage requires huge efforts and investment to move forward. ‘I tell my distributors, if you want to do this business, you need to delay gratification!’ laughs CW. ‘Eventually it will pay off’.

Keeping motivated is key for the entrepreneur. ‘Commitment, staying power, determination, it all has to be there,‘ observes Tan. ‘You have to see beyond making money. We are mission-driven. You have to see things in the right manner to see other ways of generating cash flow. We have a mission and a purpose. We can help people, and everything has CSR implications, but we need to take care of the bottom line, we cannot just be philanthropic.’

Tan is working towards a major breakthrough in the next two to three years, which will give Nukleus the quantum leap necessary to move it up to the next level.

‘In terms of demand, it’s all very scaleable. If a major retailer in the UK, US or Europe, took on the brand, we know that it will have a tremendous positive impact for us in Asia.’

Nukleus organic cotton vest


Tan is resolute and positive about the future. ‘We have many followers and loyal customers. The opportunity can come at any time...we’re hoping to break through in the next two years.

‘Consumers can decide whether this brand will continue to exist or not. It’s up to them to use their purchasing power to do something good for themselves and the environment. We’re talking about underwear, which you wear all day long next to your skin. If just 5-10% of consumers bought Nukleus basics it would make a huge difference to themselves and the environment. It’s not just about clothing, it’s also about saving the planet.’

Thursday, 23 January 2014

NEW YEAR'S WISHES: 9 THINGS YOU CAN DO TO HELP MAKE FASHION MORE FAIR


With both the Western and Chinese New Years being celebrated, we wanted to share our hopes for 2014 and the Year of the Horse for the fashion industry.

1) We hope that the global fashion industry starts to seriously and consistently address supply chain issues. How many more Rana Plaza’s will it take before manufacturers and consumers say ‘enough is enough’? YOU CAN: Find out where your product/brand was made. Contact the manufacturer to ask about working conditions and wages and tell them you want fair and safe working conditions and organic cotton products. 
Worker in our Chinese factory

2) That workers are paid a fair and living wage for the job. Why is it that nowadays cheapness in clothing is seen as so desirable? Why not clothing which is well made, and lasts for a long time, rather than shoddily made pieces which will end up in the trash after a few wears? YOU CAN: Do a clothes audit of your garments. What do you like and why? Is it the cheap rubbish or better quality items?
Customised Nukleus tee


3) That farmers are paid a fair price for cotton. Nukleus fans understand these issues. 2014 and the Year of the Horse can be the year consumers start to exert their power. YOU CAN: Join a group or organise with some like-minded friends to research your favourite brand to learn their policies on sourcing cotton.
4) That manufacturers start to include ever larger percentages of organic cotton into their garments. YOU CAN: choose to buy more organic cotton products.
5) That consumers become aware of the impact of cheap, throw-away fashion, unite with producers and campaign ever more vocally for fair and living wages. YOU CAN: talk to your friends and family about the issues.
6) That recycling and upcycling of fashion becomes a powerful fashion statement. YOU CAN: get some friends together to swap clothes, or sell them in the market. Unleash your creativity and change old, unwanted items into something special.


 
7)  That mandatory labelling of clothes and other fashion items includes information on whether environmentally friendly materials and production methods were used in making the product. YOU CAN:  email the marketing department of brands requesting that this information be included on the labels.



Customised
RM5 Tanjung Bungah market
8) That global consumers become familiar with the health implications of wearing garments with a residue of toxins. YOU CAN: have a competition with your friends/organise a quiz at your school/uni, workplace or any other group you belong to. Invite a speaker. Give prizes for the best-informed person! 
9)  Become a fashion role model for upcycled, preloved, super-stylish dressing. YOU CAN: explore your neighbourhood with friends searching for second hand shops. Find pre-loved treasures in second-hand markets and look out for sales by groups like Soroptomists (the female version of the Rotary Club)- getting rid of unworn, designer cast-offs for a couple of ringgit!

These are just a few ideas to get you started. We’d love to hear how you get on. Take photos so we can share on FB...and let’s make the Year of the Horse the year we all got inspired to make the fashion industry more fair.