DATA

THE PROS:

In 2008, Aiayu joined the Global Compact, a corporate sustainability initiative that provides companies with a framework of principles to incorporate. By doing so, the brand has committed to the Global Compact’s ten principles.

Aiayu reports that both its yarn and its finished products are made at a factory in Bolivia close to where the llama are farmed, to ensure that the community receives the benefit of the value adding activities. The brand reports this factory is WRAP certified, and that each garment is signed by the Bolivian woman who knitted it.

The brand states that all its cotton products are 100% organic, and fully GOTS certified.

THE CONS:

Aiayu does not publicly disclose supplier names and addresses.

We don’t have any information on whether or not a stable price is guaranteed to suppliers regardless of world price fluctuation or if the brand has policies in place to ensure reasonable lead times and reasonable and sustainable order placement.

We don’t have any information on if the brand has any animal welfare policies.

 

/ In 2008, Aiayu joined the Global Compact, a corporate sustainability initiative that provides companies with a framework of principles to incorporate. By doing so, the brand has committed to the Global Compact’s ten principles.

/ Aiayu reports that is products are designed to last for at least 5 years, sometimes longer. Its tagline is ‘Made to Last’.

/ The brand states that each item of its knitwear can take up to several days or weeks to make from start to completion.

/ Aiayu produces a range of apparel & accessories, and a homewares line.

/ We don’t have any information on how many people the brand employs in its supply chain, annual revenue, the number of garments made annually, or how many collections the brand releases annually.

/ The brand reports that both its yarn and its finished products are made at a factory in Bolivia close to where the llama are farmed, to ensure that the community receives the benefits of the value adding activities. The brand reports this factory is WRAP certified, and that each garment is signed by the Bolivian woman who knitted it.

/ Aiayu reports it also has an organic cotton bed wear line which is manufactured by an SA8000 and GOTS certified supplier in Agra, India.

/ In 2014, Aiayu added handcrafted yak and cashmere products from Nepal to its range.

/ The brand’s yak products are sourced from the Nepal and Tibetan highlands, and the brand reports that it takes a skilled spinner 1 month to spin enough yarn for 5 Aiayu Lahan shawls.

/ Aiayu sources its cashmere from Inner Mongolia, and the raw fibre is refined in Nepal. The brand’s hand-spun cashmere products are entirely crafted by hand in local workshops in Kathmandu, Nepal.

/ The brand does not publicly disclose supplier names and addresses.

/ Aiayu reports it has a policy of not being involved in corruption of any kind.

/ The brand reports that all the workers at its Bolivian factory have undergone first aid training, and have government-approved contracts, which secure working conditions and minimum wages.

/ Aiayu reports it also has an organic cotton bed wear line which is manufactured by an SA8000 and GOTS certified supplier in India. SA8000 is an auditable certification standard that encourages organizations to develop, maintain, and apply socially acceptable practices in the workplace. SA8000 certification includes the following provisions for a living wage, and working hours:

  • Wages shall be sufficient to meet the basic needs of personnel and to provide some discretionary income
  • The normal work week, not including overtime, shall be defined by law but shall not exceed 48 hours
  • Personnel shall be provided with at least one day off following every six consecutive days of working. Exceptions to this rule apply only where both of the following conditions exist: a) National law allows work time exceeding this limit; and b) A freely negotiated collective bargaining agreement is in force that allows work time averaging, including adequate rest periods

/ Aiayu reports that the workers in its supply chain are members of a union.

/ The brand reports it has board meetings with its factory, and visits them 1-2x each year.

/ Aiayu reports that its strategy is to work with its suppliers to help make improvements if they are not meeting the Global Compact principles.

/ The brand states that its organic cotton supplier has developed a stitching institute, which gives training to women living in rural areas close to the factory. The factory educates women in garment-manufacturing, following which the women are offered work at the factory.

/ Aiayu reports that its llama fibre is naturally organic, since the llamas feed directly from nature and on grass that is not exposed to synthetic hormones or pesticides, and since they roam freely in their natural habitat.

/ The brand reports that all its cotton products are 100% organic, and fully GOTS certified.

/ Aiayu states that its yak products are made from yak khulu, the finest and softest fibres from the animal. The brand keeps the natural light brown colour of the yak – any refinement to the wool, from sorting to spinning and weaving, is done by hand in Nepal.

/ The brand reports that it sources its cashmere from Inner Mongolia, and the raw fibre is refined in Nepal. The brand’s hand-spun cashmere products are crafted entirely by hand. Aiayu’s machine knit cashmere essentials line is blended with linen to give the product extra strength and durability.

/ Aiayu reports that its supplier in Bolivia has a water treatment plantwhere it cleans 100% of the water from the factory, and recycles up to 75% of the water used. The supplier also has water-saving toilets.

/ Aiayu reports that 70% of the llama wool it uses is naturally (undyed) coloured, and that when it dyes to black, it uses the darkest of the llama fibers to minimise the impact on the environment. The brand also reports that it uses biodegradable detergent and dyes with as few chemicals as possible.

/ The brand states it would like to do more for the llama farmers it works with, and have its wool certified as organic.

/ Aiayu states it is working towards having goods shipped directly from its suppliers to the countries of each customer. However, as of now its volumes are too small for this to be cost effective.

/ A percentage of the brand’s profit from its zero waste program in India is donated to a local school for challenged children in Agra, India, called TEARS: Train, Educate and Rehabilitate Socially.

/ In 2016, Aiayu joined The Confederation of Danish Industry (DI) and DANIDA in a photo exhibition called “Women Empower Business”, to communicate the importance of women’s rights worldwide. It premiered at the international Women Deliver Conference in May 2016 – the largest, global conference on sustainability since COP21.

 

/ We don’t have any information on how much the CEO, Maria Glæsel, made in the last financial year.

/ There are no reported management scandals or issues.

 

/ Aiayu reports that its business model is based on being sustainable, that this is not an add on, and that the brand makes the best products it can under these restrictions.

/ The brand reports it has a zero waste programme in place at its supplier in India. Leftover fabrics are used to make quilts and the remains for carpets, so that nothing is wasted.

/ Aiayu offers free repair service in order to extend the lifetime of its garments.

VOICES

KIRIN RINEHART | ECOUTERRE

“Our core mission is to show that ethics and aesthetics can go hand in hand. In today’s world there is no other responsible way forward. If Aiayu can prove that globally, this will be a huge step for responsible fashion.” – 11/17/2016


HuffPoDORTE LANG | HUFFINGTON POST

Mindful fashion pioneers Aiayu set off in 2004 with the idea to create sustainable knitwear in a superior quality for people and planet. In 2006 they launched their first collection made by artisanal communities using luxurious and formerly little-known llama fibre. Today they produce in countries such as Bolivia, India, and Nepal and create garments made of the highest quality cashmere, yak wool and GOTS certified cotton.” – 10/14/2016

AIAYU | AS QUOTED IN FASHION REVOLUTION

“Sustainability for us, is that the places we (use) have proper production, both in the way they produce and the materials they use, and the working environment employees work under. For us, sustainability is not an add-on, but part of Aiayu we can never evade.”

AIAYU, UN GLOBAL COMPACT 2015

It is our vision to take responsibility throughout the entire value chain and strive to ensure full transparency of all key processes.”

It is our vision to create rich and durable long lasting products with an extraordinary story manufactured with greatest respect for the people crafting our products and for the environment.”