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SAC updates Higg Materials Sustainability Index tool

The Sustainable Apparel Coalition (SAC) has announced an update to the Higg Materials Sustainability Index (Higg MSI) tool. The tool enables the apparel, footwear, and textile industry to assess the environmental impact of materials used in global manufacturing. The SAC is the leading global association for the apparel, footwear, and textile industry. 

With the most recent update to the Higg MSI, businesses around the world can more effectively assess the environmental impact of materials as they design more sustainable products. 

According to a press release, the Higg MSI, the industry’s most trusted tool for accurately measuring and scoring a material’s environmental impact, now features 80 base materials, including cotton, polyester, and silk. When blended, these account for the majority of all materials the industry currently uses. The update includes a new feature that enables suppliers to share sustainability performance information about their materials with brands and retailers. Such upstream communication promotes greater transparency and improved sustainability performance within the industry. 

Applying trusted metrics, the Higg MSI assesses a material’s environmental performance and scores the results. Calculations account for energy, water, chemistry, and additional impacts used in material production, giving designers greater insight in creating more sustainable apparel. For the apparel, footwear, and textile industry, this can help companies design products that will attract and retain key consumers, who increasingly demand knowledge of greater transparency in how their clothes and shoes are made. Using more sustainable materials will reduce the environmental impact of global manufacturing and help businesses stay relevant in today’s marketplace of increasingly aware consumers. 

Originally called the Nike Considered Index, the Higg MSI originated at Nike about a decade ago. In seeing the benefit global collaboration would bring ongoing development and industry-wide use of the Higg MSI, Nike contributed the tool to the SAC in 2012. Now one of the six tools comprising the Higg Index, the Higg MSI is considered the leading materials assessment tool for the industry.

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