The True Cost is an eye-opening documentary that exposes the truth behind the fashion industry and where our clothes really come from. From a young age most people are taught to excessively consume to keep up with trends, yet no one considers the human beings who make the clothes or how it effects the planet.
The world now consumes around 80 billion pieces of clothing each year. In Australia 90% of the clothing is made off-shore. In the United States only 3% of clothing is made domestically, the remaining is outsourced to developing countries with lower wages. People are consuming at such a high rate that only 10% of the clothes being donated to charity and thrift stores get sold. The rest of the unused clothes gets dumped in landfills or other developing countries where they are bought in bulk and kill the local industry. It is estimated that one-in-six people work in the global fashion industry making it the most labor dependent industry on Earth. These workers, which are mostly women, are often exploited and paid on average less than $3 per day.
The fashion industry is now the second largest polluter in the world. Many of the clothes in stores is made from genetically modified cotton that is treated with multiple pesticides that can cause harm to the body. Clothes are also treated with toxic dyes, because there are less regulations in developing countries. Not only is this harmful to the consumers but it is harmful to the people who have to work in these conditions.
In the last 15 years over 250,000 cotton farmers have committed suicide in India. One of the reasons is a result of getting into debt to buy Monsanto’s genetically modified seeds. These seeds were sold giving false hope to farmers who were under the impression that they would no longer have to use pesticides. In reality farmers still had to spend money on pesticides and ended up with contaminated soil from the seeds. Pesticides and fertilizers also caused several different forms of cancers, mental retardation and physical handicaps. These companies like Monsanto are refusing to acknowledge the effects their poisonous products have on people and the environment. You can watch the full documentary on Netflix or click the link below.