Avanti Inc: Setting the Benchmark for Organic Cotton
Avanti produces and sells organic cotton yarn, fabric and items that meet everyday customers' needs. It produces goods of fine quality that end up being worn next to skin, therefore the company understands how important it is to protect the people and the environment.
In a time where “sustainability” has become a ubiquitous term that appears to sometimes lose its significance and true meaning, we present to you a company that has built its organizational structure on sustainability and consciousness from its very start. Based in Japan, Avanti Inc. is the brainchild and passion of founder Chieko Watanabe. The company has been producing eco-friendly textiles using organic cotton since the 1990s, when the term organic was not yet widely familiar.
Watanabe developed Avanti on three wishes: “I want to make organic cotton popular”, “Work is a motivation in my life”, and “I want to keep our planet clean for the children.” Thanks to her vision and hard work, Avanti has become a pioneer in building a 360° organizational sustainability model.
Having been in the business of manufacturing and distributing organic cotton for the last two decades, Avanti has set the benchmark for organic cotton in Japan. From the beginning, the company has been strongly dedicated to importing organically grown raw cotton and producing and selling yarn, fabric and finished goods of consistent quality.
Avanti respects the community and nature, and promises that its products are compliant with four main rules: its materials do not contain genetically modified components; in the production process, the company uses only raw, organic cotton that was raised with organic methods of managing pests and soil, using as little chemical agents as possible; and the company protects workers’ rights, focusing especially on preventing child labor. The company is also a firm advocate of manufacturing products domestically, using Japanese equipment, techniques and heritage in order to make the best use of the good quality organic cotton.
As Japan's environment does not allow to grow a sufficient amount of cotton, Avanti is forced to import its cotton. Watanabe assure the company is always striving to acquire raw material of the finest quality, therefore it makes an extra effort to source from the most sustainable sources. The origin of Avanti’s organic cotton is mostly Texas, U.S., as well as India and Turkey. The company goes the extra mile to retain face-to-face manufacturing character, ensuring traceability and providing security and safety by managing the whole supply chain and answering the questions of when, where and by whom the products were manufactured.
Avanti produces and sells organic cotton yarn, fabric and items that meet everyday customers' needs. It produces goods of fine quality that end up being worn next to skin, therefore the company understands how important it is to protect the people and the environment. Therefore, Watanabe and her team are involved in every step of production, whether it is spinning, weaving, knitting or processing.
When Watanabe founded Avanti, she did so with the vision of her employees being stakeholders and creators of the company. Just recently the company decided on moving headquarters from Shinjuku, Japan to Komoro in the prefecture of Nagano, where the environmental conditions are adequate to
build organic cotton farms and infrastructure. As from the employees, 52 of the 56 are women. Watanabe believes that empowering women and supporting their careers is of great importance. Therefore, in order to make the company a big, supportive family, she dedicates herself to helping them in aspects like nursing their parents and raising their children. With Avanti moving to Komoro there are plans to build a nursing school and kindergarten for children, and care services for the elderly.
In addition to this "full community" establishment, Avanti will build its new headquarters with straw bales, which, due to the renewable nature of straw, are low cost, easily available, naturally fire-retardant and provide high insulation. This is the company's way of giving back to nature.
Thanks to the leadership of Watanabe, Avanti is constantly paving new paths and growing. Aside from having developed more than 1000 kinds of fabrics, Avanti has an original brand “PRISTINE” that offers eco-friendly, basic organic cotton products modeled after everyday comfort. The brand carries a wide selection of cotton items such as apparel, baby items, towels, bath goods, house decor, soft toys, and underwear of outstanding quality and durability
Today the company continues to extend its knowledge and innovation by constantly creating new organic cotton products. Avanti's end users are primarily women and babies, but recently it ventured into a new development for pets – including organic pet apparel, beds and linens.