The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol has its origins in a recognition that the U.S. cotton industry had an important role to play in the protection and preservation of the planet and that it must do so via a system that was measurable and quantifiable.
We were also specifically motivated by an appreciation of two key trends: firstly, an awareness of the hard work and commitment of many U.S. cotton growers to the highest environmental and labor standards. Secondly, by an understanding of the growing expectation of brands and retailers to not only provide goods that have highly transparent supply chains and a robust sustainability profile, but to provide the evidence of this too.
At the Trust Protocol, we set out to bring these stakeholders together – to share the work of U.S. cotton growers – showing the world their capability – while assisting them to build on their success to support the U.S. cotton industry to become a world leader in more sustainable cotton. The Trust Protocol sees its role as helping to drive positive change on participating farms. At the same time, we worked to enable brands and retailers across the world to access cotton – a natural fiber– that has a sustainability profile and supply chain that is transparent, and to do so via a system that gave them measurable, quantifiable and verifiable data.
To deliver maximum value, the Trust Protocol was designed to deliver data and supply chain transparency – two highly important elements in sustainability reporting – that have been hard to come by to date. The initiative responds to this need, providing robust data on environmental impact and a system that tracks cotton through the supply chain.
The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol was featured in EARTH with John Holden at the end of 2021. The segment details sustainable cotton production in the U.S. and demonstrates how the Trust Protocol brings quantifiable and verifiable goals and measurement to sustainable cotton production.