Every so often as a journalist, an interview opportunity comes around that makes you stop in your tracks. An interview you’d give your right leg for, but simultaneously fear could be a poisoned chalice. Certainly, that was my reaction when I was offered the chance to host a broadcast Q&A with H&M’s Chief Sustainability Officer, Anna Gedda.
Why the concern? Well, frankly, H&M is a brand that finds little favour in sustainable fashion circles. Widely accused of greenwashing, it is vocal about its sustainability efforts while remaining tight-lipped on its production figures. Does it produce a billion garments per year? More? I asked, but it’s not saying.
The criticisms levelled at the company are often fair – it produces clothes at huge volume, is still working towards self-set living wage and sustainability targets, and is unquestionably a key player in a fast-fashion industry that does more harm than good.
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