Ethical manufacturing – Our makers

We ensure safe and respectful working conditions for our makers with ethical manufacturing.

Shantou Yufeng Knitting Co. Inc.

Location: Shantou, Dongguan, China
Established: 1994

Yufeng produced the entire product range of our first Underwear for Humanity collection.

Creating a sustainable range takes genuine partnership and openness from your suppliers. In a murky and non-transparent industry such as fashion, trust is everything. Yufeng is always looking to try new ideas in sustainable production and increase transparency in the supply chain. Not only do they have the skills to make more complex bras and underwear, but they are experienced working with Tencel and can finish products beautifully. The factory has a well-established anti-discrimination policy with clear accessible communication channels and safe working conditions.

This factory is owned by Chuang Jian, who started on the factory floor 20 years ago. Chuang Jian knows every function from sewing, cutting, and machine repairing, to the ins and outs of the design and production process. We know that we can discuss technical finer details with him, and he gets it. His wife, Yingyu Huang, is the mother to 7 children and Vice-President of the business. Together they are excited to be a part of our project – and in a country where the focus is mass-production, that takes special people. During his spare time, Chuang Jian volunteers as the Chairman of their local Lion’s Club assisting local people in need.

Min Zhang, Jing Hua Lin and Hua Lin are the talented makers that sew our range. Base salary and bonuses bring them to 60% over the living wage.

Quanzhou Fuxing Garments Co Ltd

Location: Xiamen, Fujian, China
Established: 2004

Our second factory, Fuxing, produces the underwear that is donated 1:1 with every pair sold. We know Fuxing very well, having worked with them on other projects for almost 10 years. We have a close relationship with the owner, Andy, who has been able to create products utilising their ‘deadstock’ materials (fabrics and elastics that are collected from cancelled orders, leftovers or over-orders). This has been able to divert previously lost materials from going to landfill, utilising them to create new garments.

Andy has a lot of experience working with sustainable products. He has been using BCI or organic cotton and Oeko-tex certified dye houses for years, meaning all of our donated underwear can be assuredly toxin-free.

Xiamen (in the Fujian province) is a popular Chinese tourist destination with mountains and ancient temples. One of Andy’s favourite pass times is mountain climbing with his wife and two daughters.

Why not made in Australia?

We make all of our underwear ethically in China. Producing locally would be
our ideal, but it is difficult with current infrastructure available in
Australia. Currently in the clothing industry almost all sourcing is done
offshore, and materials and elastics are nearly all imported. Options for local
manufacturing are very limited and underwear is a difficult product to sew.

We are working on a small collection that could be made locally, however,
the retail price will be higher – which is an important factor for most people.
For now, offshore sourcing allows us to sell enough underwear to support
our training and donations projects, while also remaining price competitive.

But watch this space, soon we will have local options with a new project we
are starting that creates more work training opportunities.