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Cotton Organisations

January 29th, 2021

Lidl Backs Cotton made in Africa

The Cotton made in Africa initiative (CmiA) is now able to significantly boost sales of sustainable cotton from Africa thanks to its partner Lidl, which is primarily working with CmiA to achieve its goal of using 100 percent sustainable cotton by 2022.

By considerably increasing its CmiA purchase volume, Lidl is making its supply chain more sustainable and is actively promoting socially and environmentally sustainable cotton production in Sub-Saharan Africa. Lidl has been a partner of the Cotton made in Africa initiative since February 2020.

Now, the company is making a major move towards African cotton by integrating sustainable cotton into the production of its own textile brands. By 2022, Lidl intends to be using exclusively sustainable cotton, which will be achieved primarily through Cotton made in Africa.

Under this system, a licensing fee is paid for each textile item bearing the CmiA seal. CmiA then reinvests this fee in its projects in Africa, which focus on providing small-scale farmers with training in sustainable cultivation methods and in business fundamentals. This training enables the cotton farmers to maintain soil fertility and to use only rainwater to irrigate their fields, for example.

In addition, the CmiA standard prohibits the use of genetically modified seeds as well as the deforestation of primary forests. CmiA is currently supporting around 900,000 small-scale farmers in ten countries. By increasing the demand for more sustainable CmiA-verified cotton, Lidl is making an important contribution to African small-scale farmers and their families. This growth in demand will also make it possible to implement additional measures to support people and to protect the environment in CmiA project regions.

“We are thrilled that our partner Lidl is expanding the role played by Cotton made in Africa in its product range. Such a substantial, forward-looking commitment to our initiative helps us further expand our activities in our partner countries in Africa and make an essential contribution to better living conditions and environmental protection”, says Tina Stridde, managing director of the Aid by Trade Foundation, commenting on the expansion of CmiA’s partnership with Lidl.

To help consumers recognise the brand, Lidl is marking the sustainable textiles with Cotton made in Africa’s red seal. Starting February, these products will be available on special offer in Lidl’s stores and online shop in Germany as well as in Lidl locations in other countries.


About Lidl The Lidl retail company, as part of the Schwarz retail group headquartered in Neckarsulm, is one of the leading companies in the food retail industry in Germany and Europe. Lidl is represented in 32 countries around the world and currently operates around 11,200 stores and more than 200 logistics centers and warehouses in 29 countries worldwide. Lidl currently has more than 310,000 employees. In its daily trading, Lidl assumes responsibility for people, society and the environment. At Lidl, sustainability is a case of fulfilling its quality promise every day.

About the Aid by Trade Foundation & Cotton made in Africa (CmiA) Cotton made in Africa (CmiA) is an internationally recognised standard for sustainably produced cotton from Africa. Established by the Hamburg-based Aid by Trade Foundation (AbTF) in 2005, the initiative employs trade rather than donations to offer help for selfhelp and improve the living conditions of cotton farmers and their families in Sub-Saharan Africa while protecting the environment. More information is available at



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