The Partnership Reflects Retailer’s Commitment to Responsible and Ethical Sourcing Practices.

March 22, 2018
Contact: Marjory Walker or T. Cotton Nelson
(901) 274-9030

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – Cotton Incorporated today announced that JCPenney, one of the nation’s largest apparel and home retailers, is joining its Cotton LEADS program, demonstrating the retailer’s commitment to sustainability.

The Cotton LEADS program raises awareness of sustainable and responsible cotton growing by connecting businesses across the global supply chain with the leading efforts in sustainable cotton production. Currently, the Cotton LEADS program has more than 500 partner companies around the world that support sustainable cotton production.

“We are pleased to have JCPenney, one of the great American retailers, become a Cotton LEADS partner,” said Mark Messura, senior vice president of global supply chain marketing at Cotton Incorporated. “We applaud the company’s commitment to responsible sourcing and sustainable practices, which is now further exemplified through their involvement with the Cotton LEADS program.”

Cotton LEADS is a program that is committed to responsibly-produced cotton. Built upon core principles that are consistent with sustainability, the use of best practices and traceability in the supply chain, Cotton LEADS offers cotton users the confidence and knowledge that their raw material is responsibly produced and identified. Cotton LEADS was founded by an alliance of industry organizations in Australia and the United States of America.

“JCPenney is committed to protecting the environment through sustainable business practices,” said Val Harris, senior vice president of product development and design at JCPenney. “As one of the largest purchasers of clothing, shoes, accessories and household items sold in the United States and Puerto Rico, we have an obligation to maintain rigorous standards across our operations – from product conception to final delivery to customers. We are proud to become partners of the respected Cotton LEADS program and will continue to explore more opportunities to incorporate sustainable cotton into our apparel and home designs.”

About Cotton LEADS:

The Cotton LEADS program is a joint effort of the Australian and U.S. cotton industries. Its founding members are Cotton Australia, the Australian Cotton Shippers Association, the Cotton Foundation, the National Cotton Council of America, Cotton Council International and Cotton Incorporated. The program is designed to raise awareness of the responsible growing practices and commitment to continuous improvement among cotton producers in the member countries. More information on the Cotton LEADS program is at: