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News 25 mars 2010

Building on success with timber, TFT to trace Macintosh Retail Group products back to source

To address growing demand for often illegal cattle and leather goods that are putting pressure on tropical forests in Asia and the Amazon, The Forest Trust (TFT) and the Macintosh Retail Group announced the launch of a new initiative today that will use production of “green” shoes, bedding, flooring and textiles to fight slash-and-burn cattle ranching and production of toxic glues that are decimating rain forests and damaging the environment.

Trading under the names Brantano, Scapino, Dolcis, Manfield, Invito, PRO, Kwantum, and others, Macintosh Retail Group says it has agreed to allow TFT, an independent nonprofit charity, to take a selection of its shoes, bags, textiles, bedding, furniture and other products and pull them apart, identifying every component and following it back to its source to find a way to produce the company’s products legally and sustainably. “We are committed to using the systems originally developed by TFT to monitor wood supply chains to become the only major retailer in Europe to offer independently-verified forest responsible shoes, clothing and home products,” said Eric Coorens, chief operating officer of the Macintosh Retail Group, which serves 200 million consumers a year at 1,249 stores in Belgium, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, United Kingdom and France.

TFT has developed a sophisticated tracking system that allows its member companies, including home improvement retailers B&Q in the UK, Kwantum in the Netherlands, France’s Castorama and Leroy Merlin, and the US’s Crate and Barrel, to verify that the tropical wood products they purchase come from sustainable or legal sources. The charity will now turn its expertise to doing the same thing for shoes, bags, bedding and other consumer products.

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