Our reliance on natural resources for the production of basic necessities such as fibers and food has put our social-ecological system in a perilous position. We are teetering on the edge of a tipping point, and the consequences of inaction could be catastrophic.
It is imperative that we act now and push for innovative solutions to build our social-ecological resilience, as we stand at the brink of a climate catastrophe.
The planetary boundaries were developed by the Stockholm Resilience Center to show that nine planetary boundaries maintain the current stable living condition that allows civilization to thrive. Six of the nine planetary boundaries have crossed beyond the safe operating space — including freshwater use, climate change, biosphere integrity, land-system change, novel entities, and biochemical flows.
Essentially, this means humanity is pushing the Earth's natural systems beyond their safe operating limits, potentially leading to irreversible and catastrophic environmental changes.
The textile and apparel, and agrifood industries combined emit up to 44% of global greenhouse gas emissions —where the textile and apparel industry is estimated to emit up to 10%, and the agrifood industry emits between 26% to 34% of total global emissions — it makes these two industries one of the most significant contributors to climate change.
Apart from greenhouse gas emissions, the textile and apparel, and agrifood industries contribute to the following environmental problems:
All these environmental issues can lead to a systemic ecosystem change that reduces society’s resilience to climate change.
By incorporating planetary thinking into our impact ethos, the key impact themes and metrics we consider when evaluating the impact potential of companies are:
Social impact is based on the IRIS+ framework — the generally accepted system to measure, manage and optimize social and environmental impact measurement used globally by impact investors alike — which will be tailored to each specific investment, though the measurement will revolve around the themes of:
Since our establishment in 2018, The Mills Fabrica's venture fund has been at the forefront of investing in and empowering revolutionary technologies. These cutting-edge innovations can potentially preserve our planet's balance and strengthen our social-ecological resilience. We have identified the following key categories where these transformative technologies can make a significant impact:
Each of our portfolio company is generating at least one type of positive impact — harmonized with the planetary boundaries — intrinsic to their business model.
Given the breadth and depth of our ecological issues, as exemplified by the planetary boundaries, The Mills Fabrica has always believed in investing across the entire value chain of both the textile and apparel, and agrifood industry, in order to generate planet-positive impact.
We are highlighting the following from our portfolio:
Textile and apparel industry: