The Canadian athletic apparel retailer, Lululemon, has become one of the most sought after athletic wear brands in recent years. The clothes are not only beautiful, and very comfortable, but come at a higher price point in comparison to similar brands. Where is Lululemon made?
According to the official Lululemon Distribution Overview, the company outsources the majority of production to reduce overall production costs. This is extremely common among fashion retailers. The majority occurs between South and Southeast Asia, and China. The rest is produced in North America.
The overseas manufacturing method has allowed Lululemon to grow and prosper into the highly successful brand they have become today, since the cost reduction is so high.
Lululemon does not own nor operate any manufacturing facilities of their own. Instead, the company sources fabrics from a large group of around 65 suppliers. Their iconic ‘Luon’ fabric makes up for 30% of the total fabric use, and is received from a specific supplier. As of official reports from 2014, 35 manufacturers total produce Lululemon clothing. 63% occur between South and Southeast Asia, 23% occurs in China, and the remaining percentage occurs in North America.
The company considers that keeping some of the production within North America is important, since retailers and competitors are consistently releasing new products and responding to consumer demand. Without a close, standby production system, this would not work efficiently.
Lululemon has a total of 4 distribution facilities in the following locations:
- Vancouver, Canada
- Summer, Washington, U.S.A.
- Melbourne, Australia
- Columbus, Ohio, U.S.A.
These distribution facilities work sufficiently enough to manage upcoming sale growths, and company expansion.
Lululemon operates a self titled ‘responsible’ supply chain. The company is highly selective when it comes to choosing the proper suppliers, since they do not own any manufacturing facilities themselves. The company values ethics, and supports a more conscious friendly approach when it comes to manufacturing processes. They go through various screening processes when selecting a new manufacturer to make sure their values are in line.
In a recent 2020 statement, the company stated that they source products and fabrics from 26 countries worldwide, some within the United States. 2020 plans include partnering with 55 cut and sew facilities, which are consistently assessed. However, the current Covid-19 pandemic has highly affected all manufacturing processes and some have been placed on a temporary hold.
The company is vocal and stands by the following values, as seen on the Lululemon website:
- Vendor code of ethics: Standing by fully legal, humane, and ethical codes of production, and keeping in mind the environment and local communities. This includes constantly checking up on any business partners and making sure all are in line with following the same values.
- Assessment process: Investigating and assessing each potential manufacturer, before and during the production process.
- Raw material sources: Research process that goes into finding the right materials, including cotton, wool, and other raw materials. The company strives to minimize impact the most that they can.
- Environmental impact: Working together with vendors within the supply chain to reduce the overall environmental impact that may be caused during production and manufacturing processes.
- Human rights and working conditions: Making sure to respect human rights workers conditions and implementing long term solutions to improve.
- Partnerships: Working to build long term partnerships with manufacturers and suppliers, to further develop the company.
Lululemon manufacturers are mostly in Asia, however since the country is North American based, it is key to also maintain some of the production within the area. Lululemon stores were first established in Canada, and have since been established all over the world. You can shop at Lululemon stores in many countries, the following are some examples:
- U.S.A. has 305 stores
- Canada has 63 stores
- China has 38 stores
- Australia has 31 stores
- U.K. has 14 stores
Read more on worldwide locations here.