Standing Behind the Quality and Safety of Our Products
Our global supply chain requires numerous stages to bring each material from its origin to a final product. VF is currently implementing a traceability program that will allow us to map the paths that materials take to reach their point of entry into our supply chain. This knowledge will better enable us to identify ways to improve our sourcing of raw materials and overall product stewardship efforts.
Our Responsible Sourcing program helps to facilitate ongoing dialogue with our suppliers and other third-parties involved in our supply chain so that we can help them maintain a diligent focus on material and product quality.
Responsible Materials from Beginning to End
From cotton to dyes, our product designers are sharply focused on ways to develop safe and responsible products that use less water, energy and materials. The VF Product Safety Manual guides these choices from the outset.
The manual provides material suggestions and comprehensive safety standards and specifications for all VF products. Our Product Stewardship Team ensures that these standards are implemented in our supplier factories and across our supply chain by communicating with and training supplier staff, conducting factory audits and testing materials and end products.
The chemical makeup of various product components is something the Product Stewardship Team watches closely. VF’s Restricted Substance List (RSL) identifies the chemical substances that are prohibited or limited in all VF products. VF’s owned and operated manufacturing facilities and contract suppliers alike have to comply with the requirements stated in the RSL. We frequently inspect our factories and products using third-party laboratories to ensure compliance.
Educating our suppliers is also an important component to VF’s chemical and materials management program. Our Product Stewardship Team conducts annual RSL workshops with factory owners and managers, vendors and subcontractors involved in producing VF products. We believe that a knowledgeable and engaged supplier network is a strong safeguard against potential breakdowns in our process.
In addition to chemical safety, Responsible Sourcing features other programs that guide VF’s use of raw materials. For example, our Conflict Minerals Program works to ensure that none of our products contain minerals from sources involved in funding conflict in the Democratic Republic of Congo and neighboring African countries. Other programs focused on the responsible procurement of materials, including cotton, down, leather and rubber are outlined in our 2014 Sustainability & Responsibility report.
Video: Responsible Chemistry Management
VF’s commitment to product safety is uncompromising. In this video you’ll see how our focus on creating safe and responsible products – both for the consumers who use them and the workers who make them – is supported by our innovative approach to chemical management in our supply chain.
CHEM-IQ℠ is VF's innovative chemical management program. It provides a simple, cost-effective and scalable method for identifying and eliminating harmful chemicals before they enter our manufacturing process.
CHEM-IQ℠ enables us to be more proactive in chemical management and simplifies the process, making it easier for our suppliers to understand and implement the program successfully. The proactive, science-based program generates actionable results our suppliers can use to make better choices and enhance chemical processes in their facilities.