“VF Corporation and our family of brands strive to be more than just an apparel and footwear company. Collectively, we work to be a leading global citizen, setting a high bar for corporate sustainability and responsibility,” said Sean Cady, VP, Global Sustainability, Responsibility and Trade, VF Corporation. “From our owned offices to our partner factories around the world, we use our scale and resources to take actions that advance meaningful and measurable progress.”

The report is its fourth sustainability and responsibility report and it outlines three primary focus areas: People, Planet and Product, which include worker development, gender parity, carbon emissions, waste and plastic reduction, responsible sourcing of materials, recycled and regenerative supply chains, and chemicals. The company said the report includes 12 new goals.

“VF is committed to fueling change in the apparel and footwear industries. We believe there is a reciprocal relationship between purpose and profit and when we get it right, we create a virtuous cycle that positively impacts the world and our bottom line,” said Cady. “We’re proud of our work to date and know there is more work to do in this space independently and collaboratively with the global apparel industry and beyond. We’re confident we can drive continued progress while simultaneously delivering products that consumers desire.”

Key highlights outlined in its three primary focus areas include:

  1. People
    • Through its Worker and Community Development (WCD) programs, the company provided support to 290,000 people through FY2020 and, since inception, nearly 550,000 workers in total toward its goal of improving the lives of one million workers and their communities by 2025 and two million by 2030.
    • VF announced ambitious worker rights commitments to promote dignity, social dialogue and equal opportunities for people across its supply chain.
    • At end of FY2020, 375-plus leaders received training to foster inclusion and address unconscious bias.
    • By 2024, VF will assess, identify and resolve pay gaps for its employees, sponsored athletes and influencers across the organization through pay equity analysis and review of pay practices.
    • In fiscal year 2020, the VF Foundation donated $6.2 million-plus to 72 community partners, including toward COVID-19 relief efforts.
  2. Planet
    • By sourcing renewable energy and implementing energy efficiency initiatives VF said in the report it achieved a 17 percent reduction toward its commitment of an absolute reduction of Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions of 55 percent by 2030 from a 2017 baseline.
    • Over 50 million metric tons of GHG reductions were achieved through supplier factory sustainability programs. And despite experiencing significant growth in business between 2017 and 2020, VF saw no corresponding increase in Scope 3 emissions, supporting its commitment to a reduction of Scope 3 GHG emissions of 30 percent by 2030 from a 2017 baseline.
    • 29 percent of VF’s electric power at owned and operated facilities is powered by renewable energy sources. By 2025, its goal is to source 100 percent renewable energy across all owned and operated facilities.
    • 72 percent of distribution centers are verified zero-waste and will reach 100 percent verification at the end of the calendar year 2021. 
  3. Product
    • 75 percent of all cotton purchased by VF was grown in the U.S., Australia or under a third-party sustainability scheme. VF’s goal is to reach 100 percent by 2025.
    • VF set a new goal of tracing five of its key materials through 100 percent of the supply chain by 2027. The company said it has completed the mapping of all leather and cotton sourced by its brands.
    • VF is has made progress toward eliminating single-use plastic packaging by its goal of 2025.