Brands standing for sustainability

Our brands and merchants are championing sustainability. They call out new concepts, designs and fabrics that speak to our purpose and sustainability commitments.

When we claim sustainability attributes for any brands, we obtain certification whether it relates to recycling, water, energy use, emissions control or chemicals. During the 2022 financial year some of our brands did the following:

The Fix

Leading with its #DOWHATSRIGHT movement, The Fix is all about being conscious and making mindful choices. The brand champions the belief that sustainability should be affordable for the value market, recognising just how much millennials and Gen Z care about the future of our planet and communities.

The Fix was the first brand to adopt the Quick Response (QR) model at TFG and its Changes* range was the first of our more sustainable ranges for TFG Africa. The Changes* range ticks all the right boxes:

  • The fabric we use is 60% cotton that would normally be discarded in the clothing manufacturing process (we call it factory table waste).
  • The other 40% is recycled polyester content made from polyester chips.
  • The range is designed by TFG and made locally.

The Changes* range stands for:

  • Global thinking: “what we deliver lives far beyond a retail transaction”
  • Gender: “asking new questions”
  • Future: “as we move forward, we can set new rules and learn new lessons”
Join the #Dowhatsright movement


Make the SHIFT | Recreate the future.

Our sustainable range SHIFT, features fabric that is made of recycled content. The fabric is made of 60% recycled cotton and 40% recycled polyester material. By regenerating existing materials, we help divert plastic that would otherwise cause pollution. Markham is on a journey of change – we care about people and our planet. SHIFT stands for recycling, reusing and recreating the future. A chance to recreate the future with less impact on the environment.

The brand believes everyone can play a role – Help! Don’t Harm! SHIFT – RECREATE THE FUTURE WITH US.

Redbat Future

Denim is where we start the Redbat Future, which is all about more sustainability choices. We aim to redefine the way that our consumers perceive sustainability, understand it, experience it and ultimately live it. The way they look is important to our customers. They inspire people. They dress for where the future will take them. That is why we partner with them on the journey to a more sustainable future.

Together we can change an industry that is responsible for 8% of the world’s greenhouse gas emissions and consumes 215 trillion litres of water per year. We are saying yes to empowered youth who make better choices.

What makes RDBT Denim different? Less water, recycled materials, less harmful chemicals and less energy to produce. Read more


Feel good about your bed! @home launched a plain, reversible microfibre bedding range made from 100% recycled polyester. It’s earth-friendly and priced right. The fact that its recycled polyester makes it more sustainable, with a longer life-cycle and a lower carbon footprint. It is soft, smooth to touch, more stain resistant than other fabrics and easy to clean.

They also have bedding made from certified organic cotton. No artificial pesticides or fertilisers are used in cultivation of the organic cotton – a sophisticated choice with a reduced environmental impact as certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard. To add texture to your bedroom or living-room, their luxurious throws made from recycled polyester will keep you warm and cosy all winter. The recycled polyester is certified by the Global Recycling Standard.

A game changing partnership

It all started with the newest entrepreneur on the block: the Selling Seconds clothing shop in Khayelitsha and 40 cartons of clothes donated by TFG.

Khayelitsha is one of Cape Town’s fastest growing townships, but unemployment remains a key concern in this community. By helping a small enterprise get on its feet, TFG is helping to generate income for households, and is preventing textiles from going to waste and landfill.

Selling Seconds sells second-hand clothing or excess stock and employs 17 people. This includes five new jobs since TFG’s first donation in November 2021.

Their highlights:

  • All 17 Selling Seconds staff now generate additional monthly income which they use to purchase food, pay their funeral policies, enjoy entertainment and leisure activities, and assist their grandchildren and children financially. In addition, all participants report a sense of purpose and passion for the work they are doing.
  • We redesigned our shop and increased our opening hours from 9:00 to 15:00 and are open every Saturday to service those clients who cannot shop during working hours.
  • We do marketing and advertising in the form of flyers, Facebook, Instagram, and a newly designed Selling Seconds page.
  • Materials such as cardboard and plastic are recycled wherever possible and clothes in need of repair are fixed by two seamstresses in Woodstock – creating even more work and income for families.

Back to the fields and forests

The cotton that your linen, T-shirt, or pair of jeans is made from, comes from cotton farmed in more than 70 countries around the world. In the same way, paper packaging, bags, boxes and wooden furniture relies on forests and timber from all over the world.

Cotton fields and forests are not infinitely renewable. And the soil, water, air and nutrients that nurture them are also slowly being eroded through pollution and climate change.

For this reason, TFG Africa, along with TFG Australia and TFG London joined Better Cotton and also seeks to buys wood-derived products that are Forest Stewardship Council certified. This means that we have some comfort that farms, farming communities, forests and workers, are being protected and respected.

Better Cotton is sourced via a chain of custody model called mass balance. This means that Better Cotton is not physically traceable to end products, however, Better Cotton Farmers benefit from the demand for Better Cotton in equivalent volumes to those we ‘source.’

We are committed to sustainable sourcing and set our own ambitious targets. We want at least 50% of the cotton sourced for our TFG Africa and TFG Australia brands, and 100% sustainably sourced fibres for our TFG London brands by 2026 to be sustainable. We want to inspire our customers to live their best lives, knowing that they support farming and forest communities that are also able to make a decent living, have a strong voice in the supply chain and are able to meet future demand in a sustainable way.


Better and better

We are pleased to share that we improved our B-BBEE rating from Level 6 to  Level 3, significantly raising the bar for major listed South African retailers.

For the financial year ended 31 March 2022, the commitment of the Group to  transformation yielded a Broad-Based Black Economic Empowerment (B-BBEE)  verification score of 84,44 points out of 120 points – a significant increase from  the previous year’s score of 72,25. This score coupled with the Group’s successful  participation in the YES Initiative meant that the outcome achieved was a  B-BBEE Level 3.

The YES Initiative is a collaboration between business and government to address  youth unemployment. Our aim is to target unemployed youth who did not have  the opportunity to train or study at a higher learning institute. In this way we  create jobs, contribute to empowerment and help communities reduce reliance  on social grants. 425 youth were retained during the 2022 financial year and 300  absorbed into our business.

The Black representation at both the Operating Board and executive  management levels is being secured through a continued focus on diversity in the  succession planning and talent management processes.

Employment equity remains a critical aspect of TFG’s transformation agenda, with  a focus on our senior and middle management levels as well as people living with  disabilities. We continue to work with our heads of business to incorporate  transformation into their operational strategies. Our transformation drive this year  delivered a sustained increase in the representation of Black employees within our  senior, middle and junior management teams.

The Group continues to support the government’s strategy of job creation and  skills development by investing in key skills required to sustain and grow the retail  sector and its own workforce. This year, the Group made additional significant  investments in Skills Development to support the employment, particularly of  youth, through learnerships, internships and with a critical focus on people living  with disabilities.

Other highlights for the year include creating more than 7 176 new jobs and  workplace opportunities in South Africa. We increased our spend with small  black-owned businesses by more than R2billion and invested R105million in social  impact initiatives including enterprise and supplier development and support to  communities and NGOs.

The Group continues to work with our relief agency partner Gift of the Givers to  make donations towards various communities as part of their disaster relief  efforts. Other socio-economic development initiatives included bursaries and  other brand led initiatives aligned to our customers.

Link to our B-BBEE certificate – CLICK HERE.

Our transformation drive delivered a sustained increase in the representation of  Black employees in our senior and middle management teams.

More jobs for better lives

The bright yellow canola fields surrounding Caledon in the Western Cape is the backdrop to one of South Africa’s success stories. 652 people in this community work for TFG’s Prestige Clothing factory.The factory has given them hope, jobs and skills. And now TFG plans to more than double the number of people employed in its factories by 2026.

Prestige Clothing Caledon is but one of TFG’s clothing factories, part of the largest apparel manufacturing group in South Africa. We have ambitious plans for further growth and job creation.

In the 2022 financial year we produced 15,7 million quick-response units in South Africa and are aiming to increase this to 30 million units by 2026.

We currently have 5 200 manufacturing employees in both TFG’s Prestige Clothing and our strategic CMTs – and our intention is to grow this to 11 200 by 2026.

This requires a highly effective recruitment, training and development plan.

Small enterprises are also part of our growth plans for local manufacturing. With the support of government, we are able to help develop suppliers and assist them with compliance and capacity planning.

By investing in local manufacturing – creating jobs and developing small businesses – we play our part in helping South Africans live better lives.

Find out more about a career at TFG – CLICK HERE.

Find out more about being a TFG supplier – CLICK HERE.


Our journey for seafarer rights

Two years ago at TFG London, we discovered just how little we knew about a major element in our supply chain: maritime transport. We knew that 90% of global trade relied on maritime transport but had very little understanding of what the two million seafarers’ lives and working conditions entailed.

The seafarer human right crisis was brought to the fore by COVID-19 travel restrictions, and again surfaced with the Ukrainian invasion. The global crew change crisis was one of the Top 10 Business and Human Rights Issues for 2021.

TFG London started working with logistics suppliers and other stakeholders to understand the challenge and take action. For the first time we started working with mapped routes and shipping data.

We collaborated with the Ethical Trade Initiative (ETI) and the International Transport Workers’ Federation (ITF). TFG London also became a signatory to the Neptune Declaration on Seafarers Wellbeing and Crew Change and requires all our maritime logistics partners to adhere to the Maritime Labour Convention 2006. The latter defines minimum working and living standards for all seafarers working on ships.

In 2022 we focused on working with Anti-Slavery International and the ETI to convene and unite all Apparel and Textile members. We want to increase engagement around an action plan with suppliers based in neighbouring countries to Ukraine. We are campaigning to identify the conflict as a specific human rights risk for seafarers, particularly in the context of the ongoing crew change crisis. We aim to engage with charterers, suppliers of services, maritime transport providers and other involved parties to ensure seafarers:

  • Have adequate occupational health and safety and other protections, and communication facilities.
  • Receive full and timely compensation.
  • Have the opportunity to extend their contracts and remain onboard should they freely request to do so.
  • Are able to request repatriation to the closest possible border locality before the expiry of their contracts on compassionate grounds, at no cost to themselves.
  • Are able to exercise their right to refuse to sail.

Read more in our Modern Slavery Statement on our WEBSITE.


Taking action for lower energy and fewer emissions

Walk into a store and you might not even notice the lighting. Was it bright and white? Blue and atmospheric? A lot of design goes into lighting to best show garment and fabric colours, and to illuminate aisles to guide customers through our stores.

Efficient lighting and airconditioning is one of the ways in which TFG can save energy and protect natural resources at our stores, distribution centres, warehouses and offices.

Our action steps to efficiency:

  • Starting with the source of electricity, we are growing our investment in solar panels for renewable energy supply, especially at distribution centres. Where we lease facilities, we encourage landlords to invest in renewal energy such as solar panels and inverters.
  • We are systematically replacing all lighting with light emitting diode (LED) lighting. LED lights produce light up to 90% more efficiently than incandescent light bulbs.
  • We are monitoring the energy use in buildings and will soon display consumption detail at the building.
  • By improving store trading densities, we use space more efficiently, which results in utilities ratios also improving.
  • Our store design team is continuously exploring new technology or concepts for energy efficient lighting.
  • We use analytics to identify stores that are out of line in terms of energy usage and take action to reduce consumption, for example making sure lights and aircon are switched off at night.
  • We have around 200 stores with online meter monitoring that helps us track usage and potential improvements.

The Integrated Energy Plan that the Group has embarked on in the 2022 financial year involves the roll out of meters (bill verification, tariff analysis and behaviour change), lighting, solar and air conditioning. The plan will be implemented within our stores, head office buildings and distribution centres.

Read more in our carbon footprint report – CLICK HERE.


TFG has great talent

We celebrate our diverse talent and provide many opportunities for career growth and learning at TFG.

How learning and development works at TFG: We offer various development programmes for our people at all levels

  • TFG invested over R70 million in youth skills development in the financial year that ended 30 March 2022. Read more in our INSPIRED LIVING REPORT.
  • TFG is a registered accredited training provider with the Wholesale and Retail (W&R) SETA. Our Project Elevate programme culminates in a nationally recognized retail qualification.
  • Our various skills programmes expose young people to workplaces and prepare them for formal employment and qualifications through our various learnerships and internships that we offer.
  • Our employee learnerships enable current employees to get formal qualifications and boost their careers.
  • We provide a combination of classroom-based training and practical work experience.
  • Our employees have access to digital learning on the TFGLearn platform anywhere, anytime and on any device, free to the learner. Over 170 414 courses were completed in the 2022 financial year by 21 824 employees. 78 unique courses have been developed and published to date.
  • Our newly acquired Yoobic learning platform adds to our digital learning eco–system. This platform delivers learning that is gamified, chunked and geared towards microlearning – developed by our teams for our teams.
  • Our first online leadership programme was launched in 2021 to develop potential leaders for TFG and leadership EQ training was made accessible to all field managers in the same year.

We have a rigorous process to identify high performing individuals who can attend these programmes and subsequently take on more senior available roles. These employees are typically previously disadvantaged candidates who know that they are valued as someone with the ability and aspiration to rise to and succeed in more senior, critical positions. As such they have access to career advancement opportunities.The TFG executives all have scorecards that evaluate their performance and that determine their pay. Transformation and youth employment are some of the scorecard indicators for which TFG tracks progress. This is how serious we are about building a business that is diverse and inclusive.

The business champions we cheer for

Small businesses create much needed jobs in South Africa. They are also the corporate and large employers of the future if we all help them grow. By supporting local enterprises, we invest in our economy and our people, and ensure better living for all.

A business like TFG requires a number of suppliers for the items we cannot manufacture ourselves. We support as many local enterprises as we can and intentionally look for businesses owned by black people and black women.

Some of our supplier success stories include:

  • All non-merchandise store stationery and printed material are now supplied by a 100% black-owned Exempted Micro Enterprise (EME).
  • 20 black-owned SMME’s produced 6,2 million units in the 2022 financial year which equates to a 96% contribution to the TFG’s Design & Manufacturing non-owned manufacturing component.

When we have a relationship with a supplier, we take it further. We help them grow and support them through the challenges a small business face. For example, during the 2022 financial year:

  • In collaboration with a partner, we empower factories to make and plot their own production markers so that they can be in control of their online date for production.
  • We assisted in the expansion of strategic suppliers to new premises and provided them with equipment.
  • We offer small businesses accelerated and preferential payment terms.
  • We helped a strategic manufacturing partner by deploying a digital planning board at their factory to help them with the best use of their resources.
  • We assisted strategic suppliers in accessing government funding for expansion and skills development.
  • We made it possible for strategic manufacturing partners to print wash care labels and RFID tags for their production orders onsite as this reduces production lead times.

Find out how to become a TFG supplier – CLICK HERE.


What is in a bag

Did you know? Our research at TFG shows that our customers in South Africa use 48 million single-use TFG plastic bags per year. They use a bag for an average of 12 minutes.

We also know that each bag has a lifespan of up to 1 000 years.

Although plastic is really useful, it is a pollutant, often non-recyclable and contributes to emissions. At TFG we want to reduce the use of plastic bags. This is not as simple as it sounds.

Our next step was to join the South Africa Plastics Pact and commit to their roadmap to 2025. We support a circular system where we capture the value of plastic materials by keeping plastics in the economy but out of our environment.

To date, we have been able to design more standardised bags across our brands.

We are phasing in a new specification of plastic bag that is made from 100% post-consumer recyclate. All our bags were changed to the material LDPE that is more recycled and recyclable in South Africa. We moved from 38 different sizes of bags to 6 size variations which reduces the waste when making the bags and maximise the usage of the plastic roll the bags are printed on.

We also removed the small gusset at the bottom of the bag to reduce the plastic used when making the bag.,/p>

100% of TFG Africa plastic packaging is recycled.

At TFG Australia we are committed to more efficient and sustainable packaging. Our store bags are now in the process of transitioning over to certified sustainably sourced paper and are currently in stores. We also investigated using biodegradable online packaging but found that our current infrastructure does not enable home composting. This means our packaging would still end up in landfill sites. As an interim measure we have moved from 80% recycled input materials to 100% and updated our messaging to encourage customers to recycle these. We are also investigating our product packaging within our supply chain to be more efficient and, where possible, recycled.

Read more about our efforts in Australia to reduce waste HERE.