Under the Nile is constantly evolving as a company, and our sustainability practices are no different. Each year we find new ways to improve and set company-wide goals to bring our sustainability to the next level.
One of our goals for 2022 is to eliminate the plastic “swift tags” that we use to attach our hang tags, in order to reduce the amount of plastic waste that our company produces. While this may seem like an easy task, a lot has gone into this process. Here’s how we tackled this goal…
The first thing we needed to figure out was how we were going to attach our hang tags without the use of a swift tag. After multiple brainstorming sessions, we decided to use branded organic cotton woven tape which could be attached as loops onto the garments.
At the farm where our products are created, we have a machine that weaves organic cotton yarn into a tape. While visiting the farm a few months ago, I sat down with Ibrahim al Deeb, the manager running this operation, and gave him sketches of how the new loops could look. After experiment with the width and thickness of the tape, we decided to go with a white tape accented with a gray dotted line.
The next step was to decide where we would be attaching the loop on the garments. The little woven loops were placed on each style based on accessibility and aesthetics. There were some products that we had to get creative for to ensure that the tag would still be visible when the product was packed and folded. This is when I consulted with our master packer, Hani Elsayed to make sure the location we chose would work when packing.
We went through the same process for our toys, eliminating both the plastic hanger hooks and swift tags. Now we are attaching our hang tags to our toys in three different ways – by using our recycled toy card, adding a string around the neck of the toy, or attaching the tag to a loop that has been sewn on. For example:
The final step was revising our spec packages to reflect all of these changes, so our production team would know how to implement them for the next production run. We have hundreds of products, so we had to go through each style individually to make note of the necessary changes.
This was a big undertaking for something as simple as a swift tag, but I am so happy that we did it! We still have many products currently in inventory with the swift tag, but I can promise you that all future styles, starting with the Fall/Winter 2022 collection, will no longer have swift tags or plastic hooks.
Now when you see the little white loop with the gray dotted line, you can smile knowing the process it took to eliminate the little plastic thing called a swift tag.