Officials at CERES are hoping that Nike's decision to endorse the principles will be a positive step for the apparel industry in general. CERES executive director Robert Kinloch Massie described the move as 'a tremendous opportunity for environmental and social advocacy organizations to positively engage with one of the highest-profile companies in the world on the issue of global responsibility.'
Nike admits that it has not been as vigilant as it could have been in the past when it came to monitoring working conditions, but says this is changing.
One of the requirements of CERES-endorsing companies is to participate in open dialogue with public interest groups about their performance. Nike is aiming to meet this requirement through the implementation of several new programmes.
The majority of Nike's manufacturing takes place in developing countries, where its suppliers employ more than 500,000 workers. For a large multinational company with so many interests abroad, it is not always easy to be transparent. However, Nike has launched its 'Transparency 101' program, which is designed to ensure that the public is aware of everything the company is doing. Transparency 101 is monitoring factories in each country where Nike operates and ensuring that the practices in each are in line with its code of conduct.
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