Sandqvist works with three factories in India and two in Vietnam. Our organic cotton is sourced directly from cotton farmers in India though a partner in India.
Sandqvist’s oldest partner is a bag factory in Calcutta, West Bengal, India, that we have been working with since 2008. This factory manufactures many of Sandqvist’s canvas and Cordura bags. The factory mostly produces for Sandqvist and employs about 50 people. The company is a family business, owned and operated by Mr. Shakil, his wife and their three sons. The factory is in the process of SA8000 certification, which is an international standard certifying that the factory has good working conditions. During the cooperation with Sandqvist, Mr. Shakil has also built a completely new factory which has greatly improved the working conditions in the factory.
Our second oldest partner factory is in Chennai, Tamil Nadu, India. and we began working with them in 2009. This factory was opened with funding from the Swedish International Development Cooperation Agency and much of their equipment comes from a defunct sewing factory in Sweden. The factory specializes in high-end leathers and we produce our leather bags and most of our small leather goods there. The factory also produces some of our Cordura and canvas products. The factory is a family business, run by Mr. Noor, his wife Anjum and Mr. Noor's brother Zafar. It employs about 130 people and over 90% of their production output is for Sandqvist. Fair Wear Foundation (FWF) audited the working conditions in the factory in 2016 and in 2017 they did a staff training to strengthen employees’ rights in the workplace.
In 2012, we started working with a factory in Delhi, India. It has about 500 employees, and our products represent only a small percentage of their total capacity. We produce our Waxed Canvas products and some leather goods at this factory. The factory has been audited regarding working conditions according to the standards of the Business Social Compliance Initiative (BSCI) and Sandqvist has followed up too see that improvements have been made.
In 2016 Sandqvist started working with a factory in the Dong Nai province in southern Vietnam, near Ho Chi Minh. The factory employs 900 workers and has a capacity to produce 400,000 pieces per month. We produce our Lucid and Aerial series at this factory. The factory produces bags for major European and US brands and has undergone numerous audits of working conditions. Sandqvist has reviewed these audits and is working together with our supplier to achieve improvements where needed.
In 2017 Sandqvist started working with a factory in the Binh Duong province in southern Vietnam, also not far from Ho Chi Minh. This is Sandqvist’s biggest supplier with about 3000 employees. This factory produces a large portion of our canvas bags. Together with two other FWF member companies producing in this factory, Sandqvist has audited the working conditions and ensured that improvements have been made. In August 2017, FWF carried our staff training in the factories regarding their rights.
WORKING CONDITIONS, WAGES AND EMPLOYEE RIGHTS
Sandqvist is a member of Fair Wear Foundation (FWF) and committed to implementing the FWF Code of Labour Practices at our suppliers. The code stipulates minimum requirements for working conditions based on UN and ILO principles. This includes the right of all workers to join trade unions, the right to a living wage, reasonable hours of work, safe working conditions and a legally binding employment relationship. Child labour and all forms of discrimination is banned.
Sandqvist regularly visits all our suppliers to make sure that working conditions comply with the code. This efforts to secure decent working conditions at all factories manufacturing our products will be verified by FWF and publicly reported on their homepage. FWF is an independent non-profit organisation that is jointly governed by representatives of business, labour and non-profit sectors. The multi-stakeholder structure of FWF guarantees independent monitoring and transparency regarding the manufacturing of Sandqvist's products.