Missguided supply boss: Don’t demonise fashion’s democratisation

Smith, Paul - Missguided

The retail sector’s issues around sustainability and ethics go much deeper than sounding off about a £1 bikini, says Missguided head of product quality and supply base Paul Smith

At 3.12pm on Monday afternoon, an embargoed press release dropped into my inbox from the Environmental Audit Committee (EAC). 

It was the news that the government had decided not to endorse any of its recommendations following its analysis, which I had given evidence to on behalf of Missguided.

I guess it was inevitable that the £1 bikini we’d been offering as a loss-leader to customers for the previous week was going to be seen in that context.

And so it was – it was no surprise that those with strong and sincerely held beliefs about fast fashion condemned it as a representation of all that was wrong about what we do.

But while I respect those words, I think we have to be careful not to confuse the symbolism of totems with real issues.

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