A total of 250 companies were present in Peru Moda y Moda Deco 2018. What are the main certifications they have? Are the certifications a reflection of their work scheme?


From April 25 to 27, the Lima Convention Center was once again the setting for Peru Moda y Moda Deco 2018. Here, companies from the textile and decorative items sector exhibited their representative products of the national offer.

Attendees: Visitors and Buyers

The more than 8000 attendees were able to find opportunities to establish trade alliances for three days, since the pieces were exhibited in each stand and it was possible to enter freely. However, according to figures from PromPerú, only 1,000 were national and international buyers, mainly from Asia, Europe and America.

Asistentes y compradores del Perú Moda 2018 en cifras. Fuente: PromPerú

The 250 exhibitors were grouped sequentially into nine sectors: alpaca, deco and gifts, brands and designers, jewelry, confections, shoes and accesories, sourcing, jeans and babies and kids apparel.

What brands have certifications?

Certifications are a mechanism that allows describing the quality of the products, the process behind them, the performance of the companies, among other aspects. They are acquired by brands or companies interested in having them and they are granted by different institutions, private or state, after a process of measurement and analysis whose methodology varies according to each certification. They serve to some extent as warranty indicators to the consumers or those benefited by the products or companies.

There are various certifications for different industries, such as ISO 9000 or LEED. In the textile and accessories market, the most recognized worldwide are those of the World Fair Trading Organization and FairTrade. Both belong to the same organization although they do not mean the same thing. The brand WFTO o FTO is aimed at organizations that fully embrace the fair trade policy, while FairTrade is applicable to products (mainly raw materials) whose dynamics are within fair trade. No crafts are covered by the Fairtrade label. In Peru, there is the certification known asGood Practices and Fair Trade issued by PromPerú, an agency attached to the Ministry of Foreign Trade and Tourism.

The fair trade It is the common denominator of the main certifications of the exhibitors of Peru Moda. According to the World Fair Trade Organization, it is a commercial association, based on dialoguethe transparency and respect, that aims for a bigger equity in international trade. Contributes to sustainable development by offering better conditions on commerce and guaranteeing the rights of marginalized producers and workers, especially in the South

Fast Not Fash conducted a poll on the certifications owned by the participants of the fair of the latest installment of PeruModa, by asking * directly, in addition to collecting information available on their digital portals.

 

The majority of the brands don't have or don't declare having a certification, which can be due to different factors. However, different companies expressed their desire to obtain them since they consider that they are doing work that meets high quality standards, in addition to using natural materials and a work system that benefits communities or respects their workers.

As for obtaining, it is important to remember that certifications have a period of expiring determined and a not inconsiderable cost, in addition to being non-standardized, preventing certain companies from making an estimate based on their budgets. Others simply do not acquire them because they consider them not profitable. Additionally, most certifications are for products or brands that achieve a certain level of profits, as in the case of the BPCJ where the level of annual sales must be not less than US $ 20,000, leaving retailers without the possibility of acquiring them. Therefore, the fact that a brand does not have a certification does not necessarily mean that they are operating at a low level.

On the other hand, information on the provenance of materials and the trading system is of utmost importance for buyers. If a retailer or wholesaler wants to know more about the manufacturing process and the origin of their products, it is ideal that they can answer their doubts easily and free of charge, regardless of whether or not they have a certification.

However, the efficiency of certifications has also been questioned on different occasions. The Fair Trade Initiative (ETI) questions the process of audits, among many things, the time assigned to the inspections, since it does not always allow to show reality as it is within a limited space and time of work dynamics."Over and over again, we hear that audits have little 'real' interaction with workers, and that the companies commissioning them don't invest in high-quality monitoring."  Also, just as the case From Pricewaterhouse Coopers and Odebretch, auditors may act voluntarily or receive bribes to overlook irregularities, either for individual benefit or to maintain the audit firm-auditee relationship.

This year, PeruModa has declared putting «emphasis on sustainability in order to respect the environment, social responsability and generate an impact and added value throughout the production chain ”. Although the certifications are not definitive references on the efficiency of good practices, the interest of many companies and brands that seek to count on the support from private or public organizations to the work they do. Alternative mechanisms can also help meet the objectives of both parties.

by: Solange Gutierrez
* The study was carried out on the 250 participating companies of PeruModa 2018, and the information was collected / requested personally, via email and visits to the web pages of each of the brands.