Why Choose Ethical and Sustainable Fashion? Your Impact When You Shop at Tamarind Chutney
We know that choosing sustainable and ethically made fashion isn't the easy choice to make. After all, fast fashion lures us in with the temptation of millions of choices at dirt-cheap prices, while hiding the environmental and human cost behind flashy advertisements to "shop-till-you-drop."
But if you're reading this, then you're either thinking about switching to sustainable fashion or you've already made that decision, and we're so grateful to you! By choosing to shop for sustainable and ethical fashion, you are part of a rising tide of consumers and slow fashion brands across the world demanding and working for a more environmentally sustainable, fair, and equitable fashion industry.
Since you've chosen to put your faith in us, we want you to know the impact that your sustainable purchasing decision is creating in the world.
4 Benefits Buying Sustainable Fashion at Tamarind Chutney Will Always Have
No matter what you buy from us, here’s the bare minimum impact of every clothing purchase you make at Tamarind Chutney:
1. Preserving the beauty of India’s rich craft heritage
India has an unparalleled craft heritage. We have hundreds of beautiful crafts and weaves to admire from every part of the country. But competition from mass fast fashion production, the disorganized nature of the artisan sector, and the presence of middlemen has reduced the profitability of practicing Indian crafts. As a result, they’re dwindling.
But by choosing to shop at Tamarind Chutney, you’re helping us change the status quo, preserve India’s rich craft heritage and help artisans earn recognition and fair pay for their hard work and immense skill. We source directly from artisans so that every rupee we pay for fabrics reaches them.
2. While helping artisans and tailors work under ethical conditions for fair pay:
Okay, we know that’s a mouthful. But taking a step to challenge the exploitative status quo of the fashion industry is no joke.
Have you ever wondered - Why are my clothes so cheap? It’s because someone else is paying the unseen price. Usually, when you buy a product for Rs. 1000, the person who makes your clothes earns less than Rs. 100. Fast fashion brands are only profitable because they severely exploit and underpay their workers, who have to often live with poverty-level wages.
They are also frequently subjected to physical, sexual, and verbal abuse and harassment, long working hours, and unhealthy and unsafe working conditions that have led to tragic and avoidable deaths. In the COVID-19 pandemic, garment workers have also had to deal with non-payment of wages from manufacturers because of canceled orders from brands.
As a brand, we despise this status quo and are doing everything we can to change it. At Tamarind Chutney, we’re committed to paying above-market wages and fair and ethical treatment of our artisans and tailors. But those are not empty words: we put our money where our mouth is through our commitment to radical price transparency.
When you buy any product in our store, from our scrunchies to our clothing, you’ll find a section labeled “Price Transparency.” We share the cost breakdown for each of our products so that you know exactly where your money is going. Read more about our commitment to price transparency.
3. Reducing between 19.5 - 199.5 years of greenhouse gas emissions:
We keep our clothing and accessories as plastic-free as possible. We never use synthetic plastic-based fabrics which are non-biodegradable and leech microplastics. That means when you buy sustainable fashion at Tamarind Chutney, you are reducing between 19.5 - 199.5 years of greenhouse gas emissions from the decomposition of one garment. Allow us to explain.
When an item decomposes in a landfill, it gives off greenhouse gases. On average, a cotton top will take up to 5 months to decompose while a synthetic fabric like polyester, nylon, acrylic or elastane will take between 20-200 (yes, 200!) years to decompose, depending on the fabric used.
To add to that, producing synthetic fabrics contributes significantly more to greenhouse gas production than growing and producing cotton fabric. A polyester shirt has a carbon footprint of 5.5 kg while a cotton shirt’s carbon footprint is 27% lower at 4.3 kg. From a carbon emissions perspective, natural fabrics like cotton are definitely a better option.
4. Saving 900 microplastic fibers from ending up in the ocean with every wash:
Synthetic fabrics like polyester are made of plastic and they’re used in a majority of the world’s clothing, partly because they’re cheap and partly because they have qualities that are useful in certain types of garments. For example, most activewear is made using polyester or nylon because they are sweat-wicking and dry quickly.
However, the widespread use of synthetic fabrics is leading to a huge environmental problem - microplastics. When synthetic fabrics are washed, they release tiny particles of plastic known as microplastics. These leech into our oceans, mingle with toxic chemicals, end up in our food chain and cause problems for human and environmental health. In fact, you could be eating a credit card worth of plastic every week in your food and not even know it because of the presence of microplastics!
A study published in 2017 in the journal of Environmental Science and Pollution Research found that on average, a garment made with synthetic fibers sheds 900 microplastic particles per wash (assuming this is a typical adult garment using 1 m2 of fabric). By buying and wearing natural fabrics, you prevent this plastic from ending up in the ocean.
Thank you for supporting us in our quest to creating more sustainable and ethical fashion! We are committed to becoming more impactful every day. Sign up for our newsletter to stay updated on our impact journey. No spam - we promise!