Managing Water in the Fashion Industry Supply Chain

TFIA would like to bring to your attention Water Stewardship Australia and the role they are playing in managing water in the Fashion Industry Supply Chain. To guide you through we have Michael Spencer, Chair Alliance for Water Stewardship, who has kindly put together the following overview.


Water is a significant issue and risk in the textile and fashion industry supply chain.  Population growth and changing climate are increasing water stress in regions where fibre is grown, pollution from dyeing and printing works are becoming a focus for governments and NGOs throughout Asia and healthy water supplies are essential for sustainable communities where garments are made.

It is increasingly important for designers, sourcing managers and corporate sustainability professionals to work closely with suppliers along the whole value chain to better understand water issues and try to address them in a more systematic and collaborative way, that also create business value.  Globally the fashion industry is calling for leadership and for sector transformation.

Water stewardship is a holistic approach for dealing with water risks.  It brings business, communities and governments together to work towards sustainable water balance, good water quality, healthy ecosystems and cultural places and good water governance.  It recognises sites within a catchment that develop a water stewardship plan to address shared water challenges.

Water Stewardship Australia (WSA), the Asia Pacific partner of the global Alliance for Water Stewardship (AWS), is a not for profit organisation that is responsible for promoting good water stewardship in this region.  It is run by an expert independent Board, a small secretariat and a team of accredited consultants.

WSA has recently received some funds from the Australian Government’s Australian Aid program to work with industry to promote and develop involvement in water stewardship projects in the Indo-Pacific region.

country rd texture

TFIA Member Country Road has been an early adopter of this project and we are currently working with them to look at how good water stewardship can become part of their sustainable supply chain.  The textile and fashion industry, as well as food and beverage industry, are two focus industries for this project.

Michael Spencer

Chair Alliance for Water Stewardship

water sterwardship logo






WSA are here to help Australian Businesses across the TCF sectors better understand:

  • The various water related risks involved in their supply chain.
  • The WSA Indo-Pacific Water Stewardship Project.
  • How water stewardship can help manage water risks, improve the sustainability of supply chains and create competitive advantage in the market.
  • How major international retailers and processors are applying water stewardship in different contexts, how it can work with other systems and standards and, how it can help your business.

The TFIA are looking to collaborate with WSA along with other Industry specialists in the near future by way of an industry forum discussing Sustainable Supply Chain Management.

Sound like it could be for you?

Email us at to register your interest. Please include some information on your business and why Water Stewardship is of interest to you.


Thanks For Reading!

TFIA bubble no text_gif