Hema is a Dutch fashion retailer founded in 1926 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. The multinational clothing-retail company creates low-priced fashion for men, women, and children.

Hema makes clothing, accessories, shoes, swimwear, beauty, and eyewear. Hema's stores also carry a large variety of generic household goods, equipment, tools, and supplies.

Hema operates more than 500 stores and has over 10,000 employees in stores, factories, logistics, brands, and subsidiaries across 10 countries where it does business.

Hema is driving a sustainability strategy focused on high quality products and metrials that last longer. They do better for people and the environment and work to make the world a better place.

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Sustainability Rating: 5/10

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Category: Clothing, accessories, shoes, bags

For: Women, men, children

Type: Basics, denim, knitwear, activewear, underwear, loungewear, swimwear, outerwear, slippers

Style: Casual

Quality: Low

Prices: $

Sizes: XS-3XL, 2-20 (US), 4-22 (UK), 34-52 (EU), 4-22 (AU)

Fabrics: Cotton, lyocell, modal, viscose, acetate, polyester, nylon, spandex, acrylic, leather, wool, down

100% Organic: No

100% Vegan: No

Ethical & Fair: No

Recycling: Yes

Producing countries: Bangladesh, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cambodia, Czechia, China, Denmark, India, Pakistan, Germany, Egypt, Serbia, Italy, Spain, Slovenia, Myanmar, Portugal, France, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Hungary, Finland, Mexico, Malaysia, Romania, Turkey, United States, Thailand, United Kingdom, Japan, Philippines, Greece, Poland, South Korea, Vietnam

Certifications: GOTS, OCS, BCI, GRS, FSC, RDS, BSCI

Sustainability Practices

Hema uses a large proportion of organic materials such as organic cotton or recycled materials such as recycled cotton, recycled polyester, and regenerated nylon.

Hema also uses a medium proportion of semi-synthetic fibers or regenerated cellulosic fabrics such as Tencel lyocell, modal, acetate, and viscose. Tencel is an eco-friendly fiber made with wood pulp from certified sustainable forests.

But not all the materials used by Hema are environmentally friendly and sustainable. It also uses synthetic petroleum-based fibers such as polyester, nylon, acrylic, and more.

Hema publishes a list of all its manufacturers and processing facilities on its corporate website. It aims to create a fair and transparent working environment.

The 2022 Fashion Transparency Index gave Hema a score of only 20% based on how much the company discloses about its social and environmental policies, practices, and impacts.

Hema manufactures its clothes in Turkey and many other East Asian countries, where human rights and labor law violations happen every day.

The Dutch clothing retailer shows some labor certification standard that could ensure good working conditions, health, safety, and other crucial rights for workers in its supply chain.

Hema has a code of conduct that applies to all its suppliers and subcontractors based on the regulations set by the International Labor Organization (ILO).

Hema assesses compliance with its Code of Conduct by informal visits or third-party audits with or without notice. It works with international and local unions and NGOs to improve the working conditions in its factories.

Hema doesn't use exotic animal skin, hair, fur, or angora. But it uses leather, wool, and down feathers to manufacture many of its clothing pieces.

These animal-derived materials are cruel and unethical. They also harm the environment by producing greenhouse gases and waste. More sustainable alternatives exist.

Sustainability Goals

Hema already purchases 100% of its cotton from GOTS or OCS certified sustainable sources. It plans to make all its plastics and polyester products as well as its packaging from recycled materials by 2025.

Hema also plans to make all wood and paper products and packaging from FSC certified sustainable sources by 2022.

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