Through our every action, we aim to unite the sector under a common purpose: a transparent, responsible, and resilient supply chain; one that prioritises farmer prosperity and enables all stakeholders to meet their sustainability goals. Throughout 2022, we consolidated our global community and amplified the conversation around organic cotton. We upgraded our digital platforms, as we strive towards becoming the online place to be for everything organic cotton. Finally, it was the year we got back to in-person events and field visits.
During 2022, we welcomed six organisations as new Contributors: Bonprix, G-Star RAW, Levi Strauss & Co, Norlanka, The Sting, and Yumeko, bringing OCA’s global platform to 38 total Contributors before the end of the year. We further prepared the ground to welcome our long-standing Implementing Partners to our community of Contributors. With OCA’s Implementing Partners formally becoming Contributors, we strengthen the voice of the producer organisations in our platform for the years to come.
Our Contributors are a network of passionate players who share best practices, resources, and ideas to help us achieve a more sustainable and representative industry. They are ready to take a step beyond transactionally buying certified goods and use our platform to work together as partners with organic and in-conversion farmers in their supply chain. This commitment to investing at the source represents one of the driving conditions for the change we want.
The continued support for our mission with more Contributors joining OCA each year and committing long-term to organic cotton is incredibly encouraging. We invite anyone from the industry to join our platform!
In 2022 we reconnected with our key stakeholders and upgraded our communication tools. We know that real change happens when key actors get together and communicate and we are committed to continuously finding ways to convene our community and support them in taking the right actions toward our mission.
Our new website launched in March 2022 features expanded information on our programmes, highlighting the power of organic cotton. Driving meaningful change in our sector begins with sharing information, so we have made an array of resources publicly available, including guidelines, data, training material, methodologies, and various reports. A new Contributor Portal embedded in our website is now available, offering exclusive access for OCA Contributors to organisational information, meeting presentation recordings, and individual impact reports, among other assets.
After more than two years of Covid-related restrictions, 2022 featured our first in-person Contributor meeting since 2019 at our office in Amsterdam. The one-day hybrid event featured in-person discussions, working groups and presentations, all shared with our virtual attendees around the globe. We continued to meet our Contributors virtually throughout the year, presenting key milestones such as our Annual Report, Farm Programme Impact Report, and Organic Cotton Training Curriculum. A public-facing webinar featuring a panel of training experts and implementing partners was also hosted to mark the launch of the Organic Cotton Training Curriculum. OCA further contributed to key sector conversations by participating in events such as the Textile Exchange Conference, the Better Cotton Conference, and co-hosting the Organic Cotton Round Table for South Asia with Textile Exchange.
After two years of virtual meetings with our partners across India, we ventured out into the field anew to meet our teams on the ground. A two-day workshop in Indore started the events in May 2022, attended by over 80 stakeholders from India.
Visiting our farm projects, we rolled out the Training of Trainers workshops on the Organic Cotton Training Curriculum, to the benefit of hundreds of field teams. With fall came several visits to our in-conversion farmers working towards full organic cotton certification.
In early 2022, OCA became a contributing member of the Sustainable Apparel Coalition, to work with fellow experts on the data collection and engagement methodology from our Farm Programme in India and Pakistan. These collective efforts aim to shape the development of robust environmental and social impact goals. In the latter half of the year, OCA joined the Value Change Initiative (VCI) alongside many organisations focused on delivering climate impact. The initiative is set to harness the collective expertise and drive meaningful environmental impact.
"We are proud to join Organic Cotton Accelerator, because for the first time, we’ll be able to source direct from organic cotton farmers and work with others to identify scalable solutions for the industry. Organic Cotton Accelerator is unique in that it unites the global organic cotton sector. It enables measurable improvements to farmers’ livelihoods and local communities, creating conditions for change. This partnership strengthens our strategy to source more sustainable cotton for our products and provides new opportunities to solve the challenge facing our industry. "
"In our mission to improve our social and environmental impact at every step, one of our commitments is that we will use only organic, regenerative, recycled, bio-based and compostable materials by 2030 latest. Through our partnership with OCA, we aim to support and scale organic cotton farming, so that not only we can meet our targets, but the entire industry can move towards using more sustainable materials. And because of OCA, we can take the first steps in building direct contact with the farmers, tracing our organic cotton right back to its roots."