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Tesco To Launch Designer Organic Clothing Range


08/09/2006 - An organic clothing range by designer Katharine Hamnett is being launched by Tesco, the retailer announced today.

A first for a British supermarket, the collection is expected to catapult organic clothes into the mainstream, dispelling their hippy image.

Shattering the myth that environmentally-friendly clothes can’t be stylish or affordable, the range of fashionable women’s, men’s and children’s wear will carry Katharine Hamnett’s signature attention to cut.

Terry Green, CEO of Tesco Clothing, says: “As part of our strategy to offer customers more choice, I am delighted to have secured Katharine Hamnett to design a range of clothing for Tesco.

“This is a premium brand, reflecting the quality of Katharine’s design and the organic production processes involved. But it will also be affordable because Tesco wants to make organics accessible to all.”

The retailer is launching the collection in spring next year to respond to growing customer demand that now sees one in three shoppers regularly buying organics.

“Just as more and more people are choosing organic foods, we know our customers are increasingly interested in clothing which is made using environmentally-sustainable processes,” says Tesco’s head of design Lee Rees-Oliviere.

“Not only is the cotton soft and luxurious to wear but Katharine has created beautiful, stylish clothes – which also give something back to the environment. We expect the collection to have widespread appeal.”

Respected for two decades of environmental campaigning, Katharine Hamnett has spent many years researching, supporting and promoting organic cotton farming. She brings her wealth of expertise to the Tesco collection.

The Tesco range uses raw materials that have been grown without chemical fertilisers and manufactured and dyed in an environmentally sustainable way.

The cotton is grown by farmers in India working in a series of co-operatives, enabling them to be taught skills such as how to control pests organically, without harming the land and other beneficial creatures, and their habitat.

A former British Fashion Council Designer of the Year, Katharine Hamnett said: “By buying organic cotton you are supporting a movement working to improve the health of the soil, plants, animals and people.

“My design-led but accessible organic collection will be available to millions of people at Tesco. As such, it is the biggest leap forward yet for organic clothing. I believe it could help organic clothing to make the same impact as organic food now undoubtedly does.”

Launching in 40 Tesco stores across the UK, the debut collection sees black and white mixed with softer pastel colours.

With most garments machine-washable, the range includes women’s wear pieces from dresses to jeans, men’s wear from chinos to blazers and children’s wear for boys and girls aged four to 14 years.

The organic collection is the latest premium clothing brand to be announced by Tesco. This month saw the launch of the F&F Collection designed by Lee Rees-Oliviere at Tesco, a capsule collection using luxurious fabrics and offering incredible attention to detail. In August, the supermarket launched its Angels and Heroes range of individually-customized jeans. Both now sit alongside existing favourites including US casualwear brand Cherokee and the award-winning Florence and Fred.

News of the organic collection comes as organic sales grow by 20 per cent at Tesco, the market leader which sells more organic goods in Britain than anyone else.

Latest research by the supermarket reveals the scale of the nation’s organic revolution, which is being driven by young adults and young families.

Tesco is committed to driving the organics market and this week launched an organic fruit, vegetable and salad box scheme to householders in South London.

Note to editors:

Katharine Hamnett’s organic collection for Tesco adheres to the standards set by the International Working Group on Global Organic Textiles.

To mark National Organic Fortnight, shoppers are receiving double ‘green’ Clubcard points on all organic purchases at Tesco until Sunday (September 10).


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