“The True Cost” – A must-see for anyone who wears clothes

“The True Cost” – A must-see for anyone who wears clothes

The True Cost (2015)

Written and directed by Andrew Morgan | Produced by Michael Ross | 92 minutes
Rating: PG-13 (thematic elements and disturbing images)

My Review:

One in six people on the planet work in the global fashion supply chain, making fashion the most labour-dependent industry on earth. “The True Cost”—a breathtaking and heartbreaking documentary—reveals how consumer fashion choices impact these workers, the rest of us, and our world.

Eighty billion garments are purchased each year globally—400 percent more than two decades ago. The industry that once had two fashion seasons annually now has 52 as retailers peddle new product weekly, supplying shoppers with an endless fix of inexpensive clothing.

What is the consequence of this fashion obsession—the true cost of “fast fashion?” According to the documentary, it is the suicides of hundreds of thousands of Indian cotton farmers unable to escape debts to biotechnology and agrochemical companies, the decimation of local garment industries in low-income countries swamped by donations of cast-off clothing, and the toll taken on the earth’s ecosystems as every step in a garment’s life threatens them. Continue reading ““The True Cost” – A must-see for anyone who wears clothes”

Walmart Canada ignores the high cost of fast fashion

Walmart Canada ignores the high cost of fast fashion

A troubling advertisement showed up on my Twitter feed this morning. It’s back-to-school time, and retailers are targeting parents (and children) with ads telling them what they must have to be prepared for a new school year. Walmart Canada’s ad promoted the social ill of overconsumption, which feeds the “fast fashion” trend. Like fast food, fast fashion is attractive to people who want to purchase a large quantity of a product for as little money as possible. But just as the fast food craze overlooks the consequences of overconsumption to health, the fast fashion trend overlooks the consequences to those in the fashion supply chain.

Walmart Canada thinks Canadian children need a lot of clothing – “tees for every mood.” Walmart’s child model had 10 moods (and 10 different t-shirts) in the 15-second commercial that confronted me on Twitter.

Screen capture from Walmart Canada's Twitter advertisement, 2 September 2015.
Screen capture from Walmart Canada’s Twitter advertisement, 2 September 2015.

And guess what? Having an overabundance of clothing is no longer possible for only the wealthiest in our society. Walmart Canada makes it easy for almost everyone to have more clothing than they need by sourcing outrageously cheap garments and passing on the savings to us: t-shirts, $4 each! Continue reading “Walmart Canada ignores the high cost of fast fashion”