Swiss sustainable textiles initiative: market actors and federal government develop joint solutions

Textiles are ubiquitous in our daily lives, from clothing and household textiles to technological solutions in a wide array of applications, such as medicine, mobility and architecture. The global textile industry is one of the most important and fast-growing economic sectors, but also poses huge social and environmental challenges as the majority of textile production is carried out abroad.  

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The federal government, represented by the Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN) and the State Secretariat for Economic Affairs (SECO) is promoting together with the industry association Swiss Textiles, the amfori Network Switzerland and Swiss Fair Trade exchange and efforts to develop a future-proof and sustainable textile value chain in Switzerland. The aim is to launch a broad-based and effective Swiss sustainable textiles initiative.

Project management of the initiative: 

amfori  Pierre Strub
Swiss Textiles  Nina Bachmann
Swiss Fair Trade  Philipp Scheidiger 
SECO  Christian Robin
FOEN  Laura Tschümperlin

Key questions of the Swiss sustainable textiles initiative

“What do trends like fast fashion, digitisation and individualisation, the use of robots in manufacturing, water and resource scarcity, and ongoing social challenges mean for textile value chains?”

“What would a sustainable, resource-saving textile industry of the future look like?”

Future lab: Sustainable textiles and clothing Switzerland

The first milestone was reached with the sustainable textiles and clothing Switzerland future lab, which was held on 22 March at the Hotel Sorell Zürichberg in Zurich. The event saw some 50 figures from throughout the textile value chain, mainly from industry, but also from the science community, NGOs and the public sector, discuss joint solutions for a future-proof and sustainable textile and clothing industry in Switzerland. A summary of the results of the one-day event can be found in the short report below (in German and English).

Working groups for the cooperation of industry, the science community
and civil society

On the basis of the exchange and results of the future lab held on 22 March in Zurich, further work has since been carried out in the following working groups:

  • Basis & knowledge for decision-making (contact:
  • Transparency & standards (contact:
  • Awareness building & motivation (consumers, decision-makers) (contact:;
  • Innovation & research (contact:

If you are interested in individual working groups, please get in touch with the contact persons listed.

Further information

Last modification 14.11.2019

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