VF Corporation to address microfiber pollution after Green Century and As You Sow engagement

BOSTON — VF Corporation*, the parent company of The North Face®, Vans®, and Timberland® brands, will take steps to further address microfiber pollution from its clothes after engagement with Green Century° and As You Sow. The company has joined the “The Microfibre Consortium” at the enterprise level where it will collaborate with industry leaders to develop plans to improve testing, research, and data on microfiber pollution.

Also known as fiber shedding, microfiber pollution results from the manufacture and washing of clothes, which release tiny fiber threads. Microfiber pollution is particularly concerning for synthetic textiles, like polyester and acrylic.

Synthetic textiles produce an estimated 35% of the microplastic pollution in the world’s oceans.

“Clothes made from synthetic materials release thousands of microplastics with each wash and pollute our waterways,” said Leslie Samuelrich, President of Green Century Funds. “Companies should tell consumers which of their products produce high amounts of microfiber pollution and reduce microfiber pollution in their supply chains.”

Textiles are the third-largest market for plastics and consume nearly 15% of total plastic production.

The Microfibre Consortium is working with policymakers, suppliers and brands to reduce the environmental impacts of Microfiber pollution. The organization is creating a rating system for textiles, which is anticipated to launch in 2025.

“We are pleased that the company has agreed to consider setting a companywide microfiber shedding reduction goal after the consortium rating system is completed,” said Conrad MacKerron, Senior Vice President, As You Sow.

Regulation on Microfiber pollution is likely to increase. An “Eco-Score” system in France will use microfiber pollution as one of the metrics for scoring clothing sustainability. One competitor, Under Armour, has already committed to transition to more “Low shed” materials by 2030.

“We encourage all clothing companies to disclose more information about which of their products are likely to shed microfibers,” said Douglass Guernsey, shareholder advocate at Green Century. “Consumers want to make informed decisions, but that isn’t possible if they don’t have access to basic information.”


A sustainable investment strategy that incorporates environmental, social and governance criteria may result in lower or higher returns than an investment strategy that does not include such criteria.

About Green Century

°Green Century Capital Management, Inc. (Green Century) is the investment advisor to the Green Century Funds (The Funds). The Green Century Funds are one of the first families of fossil fuel-free, environmentally responsible mutual funds. Green Century hosts an award-winning and in-house shareholder advocacy program and is the only mutual fund company in the U.S. wholly owned by environmental and public health nonprofit organizations.

*As of 3.31.2024, VF Corporation comprised 0.00%, 0.02%, and 0.00% of Green Century Balanced Fund, the Green Century Equity Fund, and the Green Century International Index Fund, respectively. As of the same date, other securities mentioned were not held in the portfolios of any of the Green Century Funds. References to specific securities, which will change due to ongoing management of the Funds, should not be construed as a recommendation by the Funds, their administrator, or their distributor.

You should carefully consider the Fund’s investment objectives, risks, charges, and expenses before investing. To obtain a Prospectus that contains this and other information about the Funds please visit www.greencentury.com, email info@greencentury.com, or call 1-800-934-7336. Please read the Prospectus carefully before investing.

Stocks will fluctuate in response to factors that may affect a single company, industry, sector, country, region or the market as a whole and may perform worse than the market. Foreign securities are subject to additional risks such as currency fluctuations, regional economic and political conditions, differences in accounting methods, and other unique risks compared to investing in securities of U.S. issuers. Bonds are subject to a variety of risks including interest rate, credit, and inflation risk.

This information has been prepared from sources believed reliable. The views expressed are as the date of this writing and are those of the Advisor to the Funds.

The Green Century Funds are distributed by UMB Distribution Services, LLC. 235 W Galena Street, Milwaukee, WI 53212. UMB Distribution Services, LLC is not an affiliate of Green Century or any of its affiliates. 5/2024