Fast fashion is an increasingly hot topic as consumers become more environmentally aware, conscious about the impact of their shopping habits and look to reduce waste.
Despite this, environmentally positive changes have been slow or non-existent, such as the recent rejection of the 1p fast fashion tax by government that would have raised money for better clothing recycling and made producers responsible for their waste.
YouGov data shows that 39 per cent of Brits think fashion companies should pay for the costs of recycling old clothes, as opposed to the government (eight per cent) or consumers (16 per cent), indicating that fashion companies are on a different page to consumers by rejecting this levy.
One brand that does appear to be listening to consumers is Asos, which has just launched an ethical and sustainable clothing collection to provide environmentally conscious customers which more choice. Customers will be able to buy items that take animal welfare into account, are locally-made or are produced in low-waste factories.
Asos customers (those who have purchased from the brand within the past three months) are skewed towards a younger demographic, with 58 per cent of the customer base made up of 18- to 29-year-olds. Some 70 per cent of this age bracket think that sustainable practices in retail and production make a difference to the environment.
Current customers of Asos (60 per cent) are more likely than the average Brit (49 per cent) to try to only purchase from companies who are social and environmentally responsible, with over half (52 per cent) being of the opinion that big companies are trying to improve their impact on the environment. Over two thirds (65 per cent) are happy to pay more for products that are good for the environment, while only a fifth (21 per cent) think that people worry too much about the environment – compared to 29 per cent of the UK as a whole.
Although it’s too soon to see the impact of this scheme on Asos’s customer base, the environmental attitudes of those under 30 would suggest that this scheme will be well received.