Berne Corporate Social Responsibility
At Berne Apparel, we have practiced corporate social responsibility since 1915. We are a family-owned, Indiana-based company, and since day one we have operated with a strong set of values. We are committed to doing business the right way – treating our customers, employees and business partners with fairness and respect.
If you have a problem with one of our garments, we will make it right. If you do business with us, we will be honest and straightforward. Our goal is to create long-term, mutually beneficial relationships. That is the Berne way, and we believe it should be the only way.
Commitment to community
At Berne, we make a commitment to our customers: We work for you. Berne supplies busy, hard-working Americans with workwear that is made right, made to work and made affordable. When a customer buys a Berne garment, they are able to keep more of their hard-earned dollars in their pocket, compared to buying a garment from the leading national brand competitor.
We believe in giving back to our community. Every year, to help the less fortunate, Berne donates thousands of coats and other outerwear to charities like Coats for Kids, the American Cancer Society, Community Harvest Food Bank, St. Henry’s Clothing Bank, the YWCA, and many other charities in the Fort Wayne area.
We also make a commitment to our employees. We’re only as strong as our team, so we do what we can to make our team strong. We put the safety and well-being of our employees first, which allows them to be healthy, productive members of their communities.
At Berne Apparel, we believe in careful stewardship of the earth we all share. Whenever we can, we pursue initiatives to reduce our effect on the environment. We strive to be a leader in the apparel industry in environmental sustainability -- in our materials, in our manufacturing, and our mindset.
We recognize that the apparel-making process can produce negative effects. As such, we partner with our partner fabric mills, zipper producers, and factories to mitigate these effects through the use of methods like rainwater collection, wastewater treatment, recycling, and solar power generation.
Approximately 60% of our garment production comes from LEED certified manufacturing facilities. Our U.S. warehouse continually improves energy efficiency by using technologies like motion-activated lights and air rotation units.
Our team strives to prioritize sustainability. When we are developing new products, we always ask how we can we make this product more environmentally friendly. In our warehouse operations, we strive to recycle everything we can. Same for our office. Our leadership team has committed to putting sustainability at top of mind.
Ethical Manufacturing Practices
Code of Conduct
We at Berne have a written Code of Conduct which details the ways in which we expect our manufacturing partners to conduct themselves, and how best to treat their employees. This Code of Conduct is circulated and posted throughout the entire supply chain.
Berne is proud to use highly reputable and ethical partners to manufacture our goods. We care for the well-being of everyone in the supply chain. All manufacturing sources hold safety and/or social certifications at various levels. Examples of these certifications are WRAP, BSCI, and Accord. Each year, we encourage our partners to reach higher levels of compliance.
Compliance with Law
Berne requires that all facilities within its supply chain operate in accordance with any applicable local or international laws.
In accordance with Section 1502 of the Dodd Frank act, it is our corporate policy that we will never incorporate into our product any conflict minerals (minerals that finance armed conflict or are mined using forced labor).
As stated in our Code of Conduct, and reiterated in our Xinjiang cotton policy, Berne will not accept cotton from sources or regions known to use forced, slave, or child labor.