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Kootex takes Social Responsibility Very Seriously

Most Australian Spirit, Urban Nature and FrenchKuff garments are made in China. The factories used by these brands are in the main ISO certified.


How does this affect you in Australia and what you wear?

Stringent Audits are undertaken at considerable cost, taking everything into account such as management practices including the health and welfare of workers.


But what is ISO certified?

It’s the International Standards Organisation. The ISO 9000 family of standards represents an international consensus on good quality management practices. ISO 9001:2000 is the standard that provides a set of standardised requirements for a quality management system, regardless of what the user organisation does, its size, or whether it is in the private, or public sector. It is the only standard in the family against which organisations can be certified. The other standards in the family cover specific aspects such as fundamentals and vocabulary, performance improvements, documentation, training, and financial and economic aspects. The certificate can also serve as a business reference between the organisation and potential clients, especially when supplier and client are new to each other, or far removed geographically, as in an export context. Staffing and workers conditions are also taken into account.


You have probably seen the dated documentaries on conditions of workers in China?

New Labour Contract Laws (LCL) have taken effect in the regions that manufacture Australian Spirit garments. LCL’s are designed to protect employees, to build long term harmonious working relationships and to maintain lawful rights of employees and employers. This includes hiring, working hours, leave and rest, occupational safety and hygiene, training, discipline, compensation and all matters concerning employee rights and interests. The LCL’s also prohibit employers from hiring persons under the legal age to hold employment. On that note, Australian Spirit, Urban Nature and FrenchKuff condemn the use of under age workers and have never knowingly produced garments made by children under the legal working age.

Factories that manufacture the Australian Spirit, Urban Nature and FrenchKuff brands are in the higher tier of Chinese apparel manufacturing. Many of these factories produce well known globally recognised brands in both the sports and fashion markets alongside our Australian brands. These brands, like Australian Spirit personnel regularly visit the factories to ensure procedures and human rights are not violated.

Factories used by Australian Spirit, Urban Nature and FrenchKuff brands do not employ ‘stand over’ tactics and are owned and operated by family companies, some of whom have been in the apparel business for decades. Chinese workers are paid on ‘piece rates’ which means they are paid on their productivity on the amount of pieces they can process for our brands. Many choose long hours to ‘get ahead’.

Employers provide three meals a day in company cafeterias and house workers in air conditioned dormitories. Recreation and leisure activities are encouraged and facilities are generally well maintained.

Many workers travel long distances for employment and for factories to retain their staff is a problem, due to distances from their workers families so it is in the best interests of the factory owners to ensure they have contented and happy staff. We hope you understand now why Australian Spirit takes Social Responsibility very seriously. Australian Spirit, Urban Nature and FrenchKuff brands are Australian owned and operated.