Sustainability in professional sport From the Field to the Fan Shop
In the past few years, the BMZ has been able to recruit a number of committed football clubs as partners for its development cooperation in partner countries: For instance, TSG Hoffenheim and FC Cologne are engaged in promoting climate action and environmental protection, gender equality and sustainable fan merchandise, and are supporting sport for development projects in Jordan and Namibia.
In spring 2022, the BMZ signed a partnership agreement with the German Football League (DFL) covering various areas of cooperation. The first and second division clubs in Germany had already decided in December 2021 that sustainability should play a stronger role in future DFL licencing procedures as well.
Fan merchandise made of organic cotton
The most recent example of such positive developments is the “From the Field to the Fan Shop” initiative. Nine professional German football clubs (1. FC Union Berlin, Arminia Bielefeld, Borussia Dortmund, Eintracht Frankfurt, Hamburger SV, FC St. Pauli, SV Werder Bremen, VfB Stuttgart and Vfl Wolfsburg) joined forces with the BMZ and the textile producer Brands Fashion to help small farmers in India change from conventional farming to growing organic cotton over the next three years.
The members of the cotton cooperative are given a purchase guarantee, training in sustainable farming practices and access to improved seeds. The football clubs purchase the cotton from the project and process it for their merchandise. At the same time, the alliance with the first and second division clubs is opening up education prospects. At the initiative of the BMZ and Brands Fashion, children and young people in communities next to the cotton fields will be able to participate in sports activities in the future. This will especially benefit girls and young women.
As at: 18/01/2023