BENGALURU: Fairtrade India, a movement that promotes Fairtrade to Indian consumers, has created a mega sized T-shirt, India’s largest ever, measured today at the press preview and entered the Limca Book of Records.
Abhishek Jani, CEO of the company said, “The idea behind the T-shirt is to create an exciting platform for urban Indians to connect with the cotton farmers of India.”
There were 5,000 patches made by school children, of which 3,400 have been stitched. Youth and other members of the public have written messages expressing solidarity with the Indian farmers.
The Fairtrade India team, who is behind the idea of making India’s largest T-shirt, says, “We chose a T-shirt because everyone in urban India can easily relate to it.”
While everyone is particular about the clothes they wear, they are not aware of the conditions and challenges faced by the farmers who grew the cotton. We want to showcase this to the public and help build opinion that can influence big brands to start building fairer supply chains,” she adds.
The T-shirt will also be world’s largest T-shirt made by Fairtrade using organic cotton. This is to draw the public’s attention towards a solution minded approach to the cotton crisis, and a way for people to join the conversation to kick-start an ethical consumption movement in India.
The T-shirt is made out of organic cotton grown by Fairtrade cotton farmers from Odisha. Children and young adults from all over India have contributed by drawing and making designs for the T-shirt. The women workers of Suvastra in Bengaluru stitched the patches together while the production was managed by Dibella India.
Approximately 380 kg of cotton seed was used to create a total of 5,140 km length of cotton yarn (well over the 3,643 km distance from Srinagar to Kanyakumari) which weighed about 94 kg as fabric.
Abhishek Jani says, “We hope that through this T-shirt more and more urban Indians will realise that the power to change issues of poverty, child labour and social justice are as much with us as consumers as it is with NGOs or government institutions.
Fairtrade is an international movement that was started around 25 years back. In India it was launched in November 2013, with the head office in Bengaluru. It is a Not for Profit company that helps farmers organise into groups, follow specific social, economic and environmental criteria, certify them and put them in touch with business.
The T-shirt will be unveiled by well known designer Deepika Govind at
Trio World School and subsequently it would be displayed at the Phoenix Market City, Bengaluru from November 23. A Fairtrade weekend is being organized from November 21 to 23 in Bengaluru and Mumbai and is open to all. People will also get the opportunity to talk to the farmers directly. There will be a screening of rare films, photography exhibition, panel discussions and live street art. For detailed information on the events, visit http://weekend.fairtradeindia.org/ or https://www.facebook.com/events/365468886949979/.
After the event, the T-shirt will travel to different places in India, to open up conversation between consumers and producers. After that it will be recycled sustainably.