Boohoo fast fashion investigation BBC Panorama

Shock, Boohoo has ‘broken promises’ to make its clothes ethically

The brand committed to a huge overhaul three years ago


Right so, in an update which arguably wouldn’t surprise anyone, fast fashion brand Boohoo has been found to have “broken the promises” it made about making clothes ethically, according to a new BBC Panorama investigation.

An undercover reporter working for the business as an admin assistant at its head office in Manchester found employees were pressuring suppliers to make prices lower – even after deals had already been agreed.

Wait so, when did Boohoo promise to make changes to the brand?

Three years ago, Boohoo completely overhauled its ethical practices following a supply chain scandal. There were also reports that factory workers in Leicester who were making clothes for Boohoo earned less than minimum wage and “Boycott Boohoo” subsequently trended on Twitter.

After an independent review in 2020, which found allegations against the brand to be “substantially true” the company launched an Agenda for Change programme, and  promised “we will make a better Boohoo.”

But Panorama has said its undercover reporter was told to process a five per cent reduction on over 400 orders that had already been agreed to save the company thousands of pounds and shares in the company have dipped today as a result. After 10 weeks of working for Boohoo undercover, the reporter was sacked for making “mistakes which had cost the company money.”

What have Boohoo said about the BBC Panorama investigation into their practices?

A Boohoo group spokesman told the Independent: “Boohoo has not shied away from dealing with the problems of the past and we have invested significant time, effort and resource into driving positive change across every aspect of our business and supply chain.

“We have made a number of improvements, including strengthening the ethical and compliance obligations on those wishing to supply Boohoo, regularly publishing our full list of approved global manufacturers, responsibly exiting from relationships with suppliers where standards are found to have fallen short, supplementing audit processes with regular unannounced checks and more.”

And where can I watch the BBC investigation into Boohoo?

The BBC’s Panorama investigation Boohoo’s Broken Promises is already on iPlayer and will be shown on BBC One tonight at 8pm.

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