Arcadia insists that Topshop meet ethical trading standards


Arcadia, the company behind Beyoncé’s new athleisure label for Topshop, has responded to criticism that their clothing is made in ‘sweatshop’ conditions, following a report in The Sun on Sunday.

According to the paper, the collection is produced in Sri Lankan factories where employees work 10-hour days with a 30-minute lunch break and are paid just 18,500 rupees per month (approximately £4.30 per day). While this figure is above the legal minimum wage in the country, campaigners suggest that the true living wage should be nearer 43,000 rupees.

Jakub Sobik, of Anti-Slavery International, told The Sun. “There are a number of elements here that tick the boxes in terms of slavery, the low pay, restriction of women’s movement at night and locking them in. Companies like Topshop have a duty to find out if these things are happening, and it has long been shown that ethical inspections by these companies are failing. They should be replaced by independent inspections.”

A spokesman for Arcadia has since responded: “Ivy Park has a rigorous ethical trading programme. We are proud of our sustained efforts in terms of factory inspections and audits, and our team’s worldwide work very closely with our suppliers and their factories to ensure compliance. We expect our suppliers to meet our code of conduct and we support them in achieving these requirements.”


Written by Victoria Kongdon