Partner Portrait ETERNA – acting sustainably out of conviction

The long-established company ETERNA produces top quality men’s shirts and women’s blouses. Manufacturing the products in an environmentally and socially sustainable manner is a top priority. With high-quality fabrics and internal production facilities in Europe, ETERNA focuses on responsibly produced fashion. Karin Polz, Content Manager at ETERNA, talks about sustainability and fair production in the textile industry and ETERNA’s commitment to climate protection.

ETERNA's production is environmentally friendly, socially responsible and fair.

Ms Polz, the shirts and blouses in the premium line 1863 by ETERNA and the custom-made shirts have now been climate-neutral for a year. What does this mean for your customers?

For our customers, the sustainability of ETERNA products, which has always been part of the <link - external-link "Opens external link in current window">company philosophy</link>, is now even more apparent. By deciding to buy a shirt or blouse from the premium line, they are not only choosing high-quality, timelessly modern and stylish garments, but also directly supporting specific climate protection projects.

What potential do you see for the textile industry in general to get involved in climate protection?

The possibilities are many and varied. When you act sustainably out of conviction, as ETERNA does, you can make a big impact. Long before other companies discovered the hot topic of “sustainability”, ETERNA’s production was environmentally friendly, socially responsible and fair. In 2000, ETERNA became the world’s only fashion manufacturer to be certified with the highest OEKO-TEX® standard 100plus, which now corresponds to the "Made in Green" product label. By contrast, many companies are only now beginning to deal with the issue of sustainability. We welcome that very much and believe there is a great deal of potential here.

In 2014 you had CO₂ emissions calculated by myclimate and ETERNA has been a partner of myclimate since 2017. Why did you choose this partnership?

For ETERNA, climate-neutral manufacturing is another logical and goal-oriented step along path to sustainability. The OEKO-TEX certification, the <link - external-link "Opens external link in current window">disclosure of supply chains</link>, the switch to certified green electricity: these steps have all already been taken. We already know that our CO₂ emissions are very low by industry comparison, partly thanks to the calculation by myclimate in 2014 and comparative values from the textile industry. The fact that we can offset these emissions easily and effectively, together with myclimate, has convinced us to develop the sustainable activities with this partnership.

How important is it for you to position yourself in the market with sustainable and fair, albeit certainly more expensive, production in Europe?

ETERNA has its own production facility in Slovakia, which has always been a central part of the company and will remain so. By having our own European production facility, we can act quickly, are close to the market and can implement our demands on quality standards, but also on working conditions – from fair earnings to ergonomic workplace design – without compromise. In addition, the distance between the factory in Slovakia and the company headquarters in Passau, where the logistics are located, is only a few hours by road. This also has a positive effect on the carbon footprint.

What is your personal favourite product from your product range and what is special about it?

White <link - external-link "Opens external link in current window">premium blouses</link> in all styles are my must-haves. I would recommend another product for the men: our <link - external-link "Opens external link in current window">twill shirts</link> made of fine two-ply are my absolute favourite shirts. The fabric is soft, tactile and has a silky sheen. A perfect business shirt at an extremely good price. And, of course, the production of the shirt is climate-neutral – a good, sustainable conscience can look so good!

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