Fairtrade Spotlight – Piccalilly

Piccalilly Baby ClothingFairtrade Fortnight 2010 is upon us and Piccalilly have just launched their new designs made from Fairtrade certified cotton.  So what is the ‘Piccalilly Way’?  Well lets find out . . .

“Our transparent supply chain

All Piccalilly’s organic cotton is sourced through the CHETNA project in India and certified FAIRTRADE by the Fairtrade Foundation. Our manufacturing partner pre-finance’s the CHETNA Farmers and takes ownership of the cotton straight from the ginning factory, that way no one gets in a pickle about where it’s come from! The Chetna project helps farmers to convert to organic methods of farming through funding and education. It’s an on going project that we’re all investing in and each year it grows, taking on more farmers. Last count there were over 1500 Chetna farmers!

Why organic cotton? – The farmers side

The impact of using harmful chemicals within cotton production is huge. The farmers health becomes compromised and farmers can end up in a cycle of debt as they borrow more and more money to pay for them, often more than the value of the cotton itself! The suicide rate amongst cotton farmers has long been a concern too. Organic cotton is grown without the use of nasty chemicals. By converting to organic methods of production the farm workers and their local environment becomes free from toxic chemicals. And that’s not all, the cotton produced is silky soft, as well as strong and free from toxic residues.

Why organic cotton? – Because it’s best for baby!

Because a babies skin is 5 times thinner than a grown up it’s really important to care what we put on their skin. Organic cotton is not only softer, it is free from harmful chemical residues and the result is a cotton that is less likely to trigger allergies and much kinder on delicate skin. Most parents want to give their babies the best start when they are little and we are 100% certain that clothing made from organic cotton is a great start.

Ethical manufacturing & a 20% share in the profits for the Chetna farmers

The processing of Piccalilly’s organic cotton is safe in the hands of our manufacturing partner (the same one’s who kindly pre-finance the Chetna farmers!) This forward thinking company gently process the cotton into fabric and manufacture the garments with great care. No formaldehyde, solvents, toxic chemicals, silicone based softeners or optical whiten are used ensuring the end result is free from toxic residues regularly found in garmenters manufacturing. As an SA 8000 certified factory good wages (not minimum wages) are paid and strictly no child labour. Free meals are provided daily, free health care to the workers and their families and all employee’s have the opportunity to progress and develop their roles within the company. But that’s not all! To enable the Chetna farmers to enjoy the bigger fruits of success in today’s growing market for organic and Fairtrade clothing we are delighted to tell you the farmers own a 20% share of our manufacturing company – now that’s what we call Fair Trade!”

Taken from the new Piccalilly spring catalogue 2010

Piccalilly Fairtrade and Organic Baby Clothing – shop here


I'm Pete. Co-founder of Babipur, the ethical retailer of goods for all the family established 2007. When I'm not talking about wooden toys, inequality in supply chains and reusable lifestyle products you'll find me riding my bike, paddling my board or lost in the mountains of Snowdonia.

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