We believe in taking greater responsibility for our actions.
In many countries the national minimum wage is below the actual cost of living. And that’s a gap we all can help to mend. Around 60% of our garments are made in Europe where wages are considered to be in line with or above the cost for basic standards of living such as food, health care and education.
Since 2013, we have been paying our share of living wages for our products at one of our Indian suppliers and since 2016, almost 2,400 workers have received an additional amount from Nudie Jeans as a step to increase the wages at selected suppliers.
We began this initiative in support of the notion that everyone who produces a Nudie Jeans product should have a wage they can live on. The approach to working practically with living wages in the supply chain has been discussed and debated in the industry for a long time and we have chosen to have a very local collaboration, directly with our suppliers, and we have not engaged in trade union or governmental discussions or initiatives in the producing countries. Different stakeholders, including FWF, have verified that payments have reached the workers.
In 2016, we decided to expand our living wage payments to the spinning mill. Payments were made in early 2018. During our visit in late 2018 we discussed the possibility of including the workers in the knitting and processing units as well, which was decided in early 2019. The living wage benchmark is based on a survey of the employees. The survey looked at calorie intake, school fees in the area, and cost of living. Our living wage concept has evolved over time and is now an integrated part of our purchase process from our Indian suppliers, but we and the industry still have a long way to go.
Right to a living wage.
On a regular basis we conduct social audits and follow-ups at all our production facilities. The audits are made to guarantee that standards are followed and to find where improvements can be made. Our Code of conduct applies to all suppliers and subcontractors involved in our production. It makes no difference to us if our suppliers are located in a high-risk country or a low-risk country.
In 2018 we performed a total of 11 audits, four in high-risk countries and seven in low-risk countries. The audits in high-risk countries were conducted by Fair Wear Foundation audit teams, and the audits in low-risk countries were performed by independent consultants. During the year we also put effort into following up the audit results and non-compliances from the previous year.