UK top for flying fashion

(28.11.2007   by  Rose Bridger – AirportWatch Air Freight consultant)

A report on ethical fashion ‘Do consumer concerns threaten fast fashion?’ by
Mike Flanagan in in August 2007 looked at a range of studies which
showed that British fashion buyers rely twice as much on air freight for imports
from China and India in comparison to French, German or Spanish buyers.

Estimates of the greenhouse gas emissions of air freighting fashion varied between
20 and 150 times greater than for sea freight. Even for the lowest estimate, air-freighting
a T-shirt causes more environmental damage than from all its production, transportation
and from consumer use, such as washing and ironing.

One of the UK’s facilities for importing clothing is AllPort’s 20,000sq meter
freight centre at Heathrow Airport which provides services for a range of sectors
including pharmaceuticals, publishing and defence.

Fashion was part of the 70,000 tonnes of goods which were air-freighted by AllPort
in 2005 and the freight centre has space for 250,000 hanging garments and processes
10 million garments per year.  

Britain’s consumption of flying fast fashion is set to grow further as in August
2007 British Airways World Cargo announced it plans for a weekly service from
Karachi and Lahore in Pakistan to London, which will carry manufactured goods,
especially garments, and for future expansion on these routes.