LONDON – The Australian fashion industry is set to begin a new approach to reducing waste in its supply chain by opening its first ever garment district in Israel, according to the Israeli clothing giant, Zara.
The new initiative will be launched in 2018, the company announced Thursday.
Zara said it will set up an 8,000-square-metre garment district, the first in the world, in the eastern coastal town of Beit Hanoun.
It will be the world’s largest such factory, and Zara said the new project will also reduce the number of garments produced by its supply chains by 50 percent.
In addition to its traditional supply chains, Zora will also focus on sourcing locally, in partnership with suppliers and community partners.
Zora CEO Roni Gevaert said the initiative is part of the company’s efforts to boost its sustainability in the face of global changes, including climate change.
The company said its suppliers, including Israeli clothing brand Havaianas, will have a presence in the new district.
“We will also invest in the design and development of our new district,” Gevaet said in a statement.
“This will help us to reduce the impact of climate change and make the district a more sustainable one.”
Gevaert noted that there is a “significant need” for Zara to reduce its waste and environmental impact in its garments.
“This initiative will help Zara in its efforts to reduce environmental impact and promote its sustainability,” he said.
Israel has the world a leader in clothing production, with more than 2,500 factories employing more than 1 million people, according the International Labour Organisation.
According to Zara, the new Zara District will produce garments in Israel for global brands like Levi Strauss and ZARA, and help Zora reduce its environmental footprint.
“As the world transitions to a greener economy, we will need to find new solutions for how we create new garments,” Geraert said.
“Our new Zare District will be a perfect place to start.”