Ethically Made Principles
We define ourselves as a Collective or to be more specific, a Collective of artisans. For us, that means each artisan in our Collective is part of our brand. They are interwoven into who we are as a company and we make decisions with them at the forefront of our movement! - Founder Audrey
The best part about building an ethically made standard is that there are so many great (data driven) resources to draw from. When we set out to build our own ethically made standard, we simply chose to adopt mainstream ideas from industry leaders. We specially drew from the International Labour Organization (ILO), Ethical Trade Initiative (ETI), ACT, Global Living Wage Coalition (GLWC) and World Fair Trade Organization (WFTO). The ILO and ETI are probably the biggest leading figures in the space with the WTFO focusing on smaller teams of artisans. ACT and GLWC each take a different perspective but both are hyper focused on providing living wages to artisans. We applied overlapping and individual ideas from all three standards!
These are the requirements that we expect from all of our suppliers and we will only work with suppliers who practice these standards. Currently, 100% of all our artisan groups and manufacturers meet these standards.
Please note, we work extremely hard to identify all downstream suppliers that participate in our supply chain. This starts with the growth/cultivation of the natural fibers and ends with the final production of our products. At the moment, we know the exact supply chain for all of our organic cotton, Pima cotton, alpaca and Tencel.
Most people/brands/organizations have a tough time correctly defining a living wage or more importantly, how to calculate one. While the term itself would seem pretty easy to define, being able to root it in concrete principles with real world costs makes it more difficult to assess. That is why, at Soluna Collective, we are changing our model. Instead of adhering to the certifications for approval on living wages, we have decided to seek the data ourselves. We are basing our living wages on the Anker Methodology, which was brought to life by the Global Living Wage Coalition (GLWC), and is quickly revolutionizing the way we think about living wages. They define living wages as:
"The remuneration received for a standard workweek by a worker in a particular place sufficient to afford a decent standard of living for the worker and her or his family. Elements of a decent standard of living include food, water, housing, education, health care, transportation, clothing, and other essential needs including provision for unexpected events."
I am not sure I can express how amazing the Anker Methodology is or how beneficial it will be to the world in a few sentences. So instead, I made an article that highlights just that. But for those looking for a brief explanation, the Anker Methodology, is the only data driven approach that actually calculates (with a formula) the true cost of a "decent standard of living". The goal of the Methodology is simple: We need to pay the people who make our products a living wage and we need to do it now!
At Soluna Collective, we are in the middle of this living wage data collection process for our artisans and will share the findings when done.
While these are our standards today, we are researching this space daily. Our goal is to expand and improve the existing principles listed above. We will use certifications when applicable and we will do our own due diligence to make sure that everyone in our supply chain meets our ethically made standards and receives a living wage!