A sustainability-oriented, vertically-integrated manufacturer of knitted textile products since 1997, Pratibha Syntex aims at creating organic relationships across the value chain. Pratibha connects 25,000 farmers, 6500 employees and apparel brands from over 20 countries.

Mr Nitin Seth, COO, Pratibha Swaraj Pvt Ltd (A new subsidiary of Pratibha Syntex Ltd, incorporated on Mar 3, 2021), conveyed to the Textile Value Chain, through an email interaction, explained about the company’s sustainability goals and related issues.

Excerpts:

TVC: How did Pratibha Syntex manage the business in the last two years of Covid-19? What are the steps taken to cushion the pandemic effects?

Nitin Seth:Pandemic has played havoc worldwide. We too had our share of challenges. However, we decided to fight back. We tweaked our business strategy to address the market demand.

We first focused on the manufacturing of safety equipment like masks and PPE kits. We innovated and swiftly adapted new technologies to rise to the need of the hour.  To make maximum utilization of production capacities we balanced out the domestic and export orders and finally aligned the design and development of fabrics and products towards work leisure range or work from home clothing.

TVC: Sustainability is the watchword for Pratibha. How far has it moved up in this vision?

Sustainability is at the core of Pratibha’s business strategy. With the world facing COVID 19 and Climate Change, we along with our associated brands believe that it is time now or never.  We work on four-pronged approaches, planet, process, product, and people.

  • Planet: Committed to the planet, Pratibha converted ETP to a 100% biological process. With this conversion, sludge has been reduced by 86%, and landfills reduced by 1100 MT.
    Abiding by the SDG goals, we have reduced GHG emissions from 2016 to 2021 by 11%. The emission offset is equivalent to the plantation of 3,75,000 trees. To further reduce the GHG emissions, a 2.4 MW rooftop solar plant has been set up, which has come into operation. Presently, 36% of our energy consumption comes from renewable sources and we aspire to convert 100% to renewable energy by 2030.
  • Process: Seed to garment traceability capability gives us an edge. Recently we collaborated with the Good Fashion Fund for the modernisation of our processes, which consumes less energy in operations.
  • Product: Working on the product, 68% of the total consumption of material comes from sustainable sources. Pratibha is committed to converting to 100% sustainable material by 2025. The brands are also looking for circularity. Pratibha is the only supplier in the country producing 100% biodegradable C2C garments. Pratibha has developed baby wear with C2C Materials.
  • People: Fulfilling a commitment to employees, the management presented dream homes to 28 employees. Caring about employees’ heath, vaccination camps were organized and 100% of employees are vaccinated against COVID.

With respect to community development, Pratibha established dress design and tailoring and a computer lab in a school in Sagore and facilitated 1700 cataract operations.

TVC: Please give us more information on the Fairtrade partnership and its achievements?

Pratibha Syntex has been organizing Fairtrade Premium Programme since 2014. The initiative supported by elite brands like Patagonia, Prana, and Pact, aims to bring visible change in the overall livelihood of grassroots employees, creating a more enriching work environment. Over the years, raincoats, water purifiers, mixer grinders, cookware, refrigerators, washing machines, and other home appliances were gifted to associates. In 2022, sewing machines and fixed deposits were distributed to Pratibha’s 3024 employees

In line with sustainable development goals five (gender equality) and eight (decent work and economic growth), we aspire to have 50% women in our workforce by 2025.

By 2025, we aim to become water neutral and shift 50% of the consumption of energy to renewables and reduce GHG emissions by 50%. With sustainability at the core of our business strategy, we target to shift to 100% sustainable material by 2025.

TVC: What is the wishlist for the industry from your company and also for the Government in policies and programs?

The government has been supporting the textile industry by coming up with new schemes. The Production Linked Incentive Scheme is about to transform the business dynamics. However, in line with sustainable development goals government should promote the use of renewable energy in the sector. There should be a common solar/ renewable energy policy applicable to the whole country.

Pratibha connects 35,000 farmers, 10,000 employees, and apparel brands from over 20 countries. Explain this vision with goals for the future.

We have the vision to be a global leader in sustainable textile products and practices. In line with the vision, we are venturing into a green garment factory to come up in Ujjain (MP) this year. This sewing factory will be producing a sustainable garment range primarily focusing on brands or sustainable labels like Patagonia, Pact, Prana, Columbia Sports, VF & many more.

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