16.01.18

20 Facts About The Fast Fashion Industry That Will Shock You

Kate Hall

Society is consuming fashion at a rate like never before. We call this monster: fast fashion.

Fast fashion is the phenomenon we use to describe garments that go from design to store in a quick flash; sometimes within the space of a week!

As the price of fashion dives lower, and the accessibility of new trends increases, fast fashion is being put in the spotlight. Think you knew everything about fast fashion?

Here are 20 facts about the fast fashion industry that will shock you:

fast fashion

Fast fashion Facts

One

Eighty billion pieces of clothing are consumed globally every year.

Two

The volume of water consumed by apparel production each year is currently the equivalent to 32 million Olympic swimming pools.

Three

Australian’s are the world’s second largest consumers of fashion. On average, they consume 27kgs of new clothing and textiles every year.

Four

One-in-six people work in the global fashion industry.

Five

The US spends an estimated $2.6 billion on Halloween costumes every year: worn for one night only.

Six

Two-thirds of all fibers used to make our clothing are cotton based. Cotton uses a vast amount of water to grow, placing substantial strain on the environment.

Seven

250,000 Indian cotton farmers have killed themselves in the last 15 years due to the stress of debt they accumulated through buying genetically modified cotton seeds to keep up with demand.

Eight

Approximately 7,000 liters of water are needed to produce one pair of jeans (the amount of water one individual drinks in 5-6 years).

Nine

The wages of workers in garment factories can be as low as US$1-$ three a day.

Ten

Using the toilet during a 10-hour shift in a garment factory can cause a major uproar from managers.

Eleven - "Fast fashion brands put out new collections every week or month to make it seem like your wardrobe is all off trend. This is the reason you sit and stare at your full wardrobe thinking you have nothing to wear."

Twelve

Fast fashion giants make clothing to fall apart: they are obsessed with the bottom line, so will do anything to make you buy more clothes.

Thirteen

Australian, UK, USA, or New Zealand made, does not mean it is fair trade made; garment workers in the western world are exploited too. – Overdressed by Elizabeth L Cline.

Fourteen

Beading and sequins are an indication of child labour.

Fifteen

Only 10% of the clothes people donate to thrift stores or charities get sold, the rest goes to landfill.

Sixteen

Compared to 16 years ago (2002), the average person buys 60% more clothing and keeps them for half as long.

Seventeen

A top corporate CEO earns as much in a year as 10,000 garment workers earn in Bangladesh.

Eighteen

Women wear a garment, on average, 7 times before throwing it away

Nineteen

Clothes made from polyester can take up to 200 years to break down.

Twenty

Farmers close to garment factories can predict the colour of a season by seeing the colour of the water ways and rivers nearby.

The fast fashion industry is shocking. When you look at the facts and figures, it’s hard to swallow.

But change isn’t going to happen from wallowing. Just like building a house, avoiding fast fashion is easy when you have the right tools in front of you. Head to our brand directory or read our blog on how to begin your sustainable wardrobe.

Read more about fast fashion and how its affecting our climate future in the latest issue of The Green Hub Magazine

 

Kate Hall

Ethical living/fashion advocate, eco wedding planner, and brand rep. Kate strives to promote ethical living in every way under the sun, and won’t stop at anything to make sure the planet and it’s people are being looked after the way that they should be.