Yes, Tu Clothing at Sainsbury’s is a fast fashion brand.
Sainsbury’s is another supermarket chain that has its own in-house fashion line, called Tu Clothing. Similar to ASDA’s George and Tesco’s F&F ranges, they focus on bland designs and low costs.
Information for Tu Clothing is slightly easier to find, as Sainsbury’s has a separate mini-site for the sub-brand. It displays ‘Sustainability’ proudly on its top navigation bar, which takes you through how the brand is adopting more sustainable materials, production (as well as their Code of Conduct, Supplier List – which even gives male/female splits – and Higg Index rating) and take-back scheme. In all honesty, I’m really impressed by this as they’ve gone beyond what many established fashion retailers provide.
That said, the Code of Conduct falls short in that it only provides an overview to their policies, and I hope they use a more thorough version when working with their suppliers. Their take-back scheme relies on charitable donations, which as I said in my review of Monsoon, doesn’t quite count as recycling in my eyes.
Sainsbury’s is also a signatory of the Sustainable Clothing Action Plan, a voluntary scheme that they seem to be following closely.
Despite all these steps, I still see Sainsbury’s as a fast fashion brand for the fact that they provide cheap clothing in supermarkets – it feels like it devalues our clothes, makes them more disposable, and doesn’t anyone else find it weird putting clothes in a trolley to take to checkout?
In late 2022, Sainsbury’s was found to be sourcing polyester from a manufacturer using Russian oil, despite having suspended sales to the country in protest of the illegal war on Ukraine.
Transparency Rating: 47/100
Sustainability Rating: N/A
This snippet is part of a larger guide to UK fast fashion brands, which goes into more detail about the issues with fast fashion, why it will never be sustainable, and how to make your wardrobe more sustainable.
Data for this review is taken from the brand’s website, corporate website, and Wikipedia. The Transparency Rating is from Fashion Transparency Index 2020. The Sustainability Rating is from Good On You.
I’m physically disabled and use a wheelchair so no, I do not find it “weird putting clothes in a trolley to take to checkout”.
I’ve had to shop for cheap clothing the majority of my life – not by choice but necessity, and it’s really difficult (often impossible) for me to go to several various stores & shops to get what I need. So it doesn’t feel like I’m “devalueing” my clothing when I’m able to purchase new pyjamas while I’m grocery shopping, but does make it a whole lot more accessible to some of us not as privileged as others.
I’m unable to do this now due to where I moved to a few years ago but it was fantastic when I lived in an area with supermarkets nearby.
Hi Violet, thanks for your comment. I’m sorry for offending you, and clearly highlighted my privilege without taking into account the accessible nature of clothes shopping while at the supermarket.
What I was (poorly) trying to highlight is how clothes have become devalued, and are bought in the same manner as the food we consume on a weekly basis. I see clothes as items that should be kept, worn, and loved for a long time, and that includes clothes from all price points, as well as second-hand clothes.