Product Quality – Social Responsibility – Environment Protection
The following report will provide you with detailed information about valid guidelines and ongoing activities that support these three action fields along our supply chain. Please do not hesitate to contact us for further information.
The FALKE GROUP produces legwear, underwear and apparel of the brands FALKE and Burlington. Furthermore, FALKE is licensee for ESPRIT legwear. The knowledge about products and production technology the FALKE experts gain and share each day is the basis for the consistent FALKE quality. FALKE operates own facilities within Germany and Europe in which more than 90% of our articles are produced. Since 1974, we also own an independent subsidiary in South Africa to supply to markets mainly in South Africa, Australia, New Zealand and North America. Selected global suppliers supply yarn and fabrics for our in-house production. To compensate capacity constraints and to extend the range of technology FALKE also selected and developed strategic suppliers for finished goods within Europe and Asia.
Our business operations are determined by the action fields Product Quality, Social Responsibility and Environment Protection. Corresponding guidelines set the framework of thinking and acting for us and also for our suppliers. These guidelines base on internationally accepted standards as Standard 100 by Oeko-Tex®, the Amfori BSCI Code of Conduct and ZDHC . Accordingly, before supplying goods to FALKE it is a mandatory requirement for each supplier of material and finished goods to verify conformity to our guidelines.
To verify the compliance to our requirements we assess our suppliers on a regular basis regarding working conditions, environment protection and chemical management. The audits focus on risk countries as classified by Amfori BSCI and are performed either by our specially trained employees or by independent external institutes. Based on the audit results we accompany the relevant suppliers closely to support them implementing our high standards.
We design and develop our products to be in line with the FALKE quality requirements. Standard 100 by Oeko-Tex® is the basis for the FALKE Quality Guideline which is mandatory for our material suppliers, our own production facilities as well as external manufacturers of finished goods. We assess quality along four categories:
- Abrasion resistance
- Change of colour shade
- Shrinkage after washing according to care labelling
- Visual appearance after washing
- Lose thread ends
- Colourfastness to washing
- Colourfastness to heavy water
- Colourfastness to rubbing
- Colourfastness to sweat (alkaline and acid)
- Colourfastness to saliva and perspiration
Conformity to FALKE Restricted Substances List (RSL) Conformity to REACh
We ensure conformity of our products to all aspects of the FALKE Quality Guideline. This starts by purchasing material preferably holding an appropriate Oeko-Tex certificate. Regardless of whether a certificate is in place or not our own laboratory performs standard incoming controls regarding the above-mentioned criteria on all materials before being processed in our facilities. The finished goods are tested during the subsequent product creation process. This applies to both, products from our own facilities and products sourced from external partners.
The tests performed in our laboratory cover the requirements of physical characteristics, using characteristics and colourfastness as figured above. Independent research and testing institutes verify compliance with the FALKE RSL, which sets the limits of certain substances that must not be exceeded in our products. The FALKE RSL considers relevant requirements of Oeko-Tex, ZDHC and REACh. Should there be any reason for complaint – we look forward to receive your feedback for consideration in our product development and improvement process.
Product certification and testing
Materials certified or tested according to Standard 100 by Oeko-Tex 100%
Products certified or tested according to Standard 100 by Oeko-Tex 100%
To be in line with our definition of social responsibility the conformity to the BSCI Code of Conduct along the supply chain is an essential part of our Buying Conditions. BSCI is an optional initiative for companies to support the improvement of working conditions along their supply chains. Specific institutes perform audits on a regular basis at participating companies around the world. FALKE is BSCI participant for years and performs audits in all own facilities in BSCI risk countries. Independent of the availability of a valid BSCI audit we follow up the adherence to the intended social standards. Either our specially trained employees or independent external institutes visit the facilities on a regular basis. Assessments include but are not limited to monitor working conditions, fair wages and safety aspects. Based on audit results and development we provide close support to the factories to implement our high standards and to improve their BSCI rating. In addition to full audits FALKE continuously performs spot checks along the value chain during regular routine visits for status updates and progress monitoring.
Environment Protection means to FALKE meeting nature with the biggest respect along the whole product creation process and supply chain. Right from the start, we develop our products under consideration of material origin and consequences of the required production process. We review our production and logistic processes continuously to reduce energy consumption, waste and rejects. We started to summarize our goals, activities and achievements regarding Environment Protection in the green box below. This box will be updated on a regular basis.
Beside prevention of pollution and carbon dioxide emission, animal welfare has been and is a matter of course for us. Wool is one of the most important raw materials we use in our products. Therefore, we have set animal protection as an essential principle in our FALKE Quality Guideline. We chose relevant international guidelines to be followed by our suppliers for sheep wool, Angora and Merino wool.
|Material||Compliance to following guideline|
|Sheep wool||IWTO Guideline for sheep welfare|
|Angora||Certified by Caregora|
|Merino Wool||Mulesing free|
Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC)
In textile production the main concern is the exhaust of wastewater from chemical processes. These so called “wet processes” are used for dying as well as for treatment of materials to achieve certain functional or haptic product characteristics. We continuously work on innovative processes to reduce the usage of chemicals within our processes – no matter if this concerns our own or external factories. All chemicals used for the production of our products meet the statutory REACh standards of the European Union.
As a proof of conformance, all of our own as well as external factories with “wet processes” have to provide valid wastewater analyses. The analyses base on ZDHC criteria, a global initiative of fashion brands targeting to bring harmful substances within the manufacturing process to zero.