Top Endorsers And Ambassadors Cut Ties With Major Global Brands Amid Xinjiang Cotton Controversy
Top Chinese stars Wang Yibo and Tan Songyu, among other A-list celebrities have announced cutting their ties with Nike over past comments of turning their back on using Xinjiang cotton amid ‘forced labor’ controversy. Alongside this, other celebs followed through by also severing ambassadorships and endorsements with top global brands who, directly or indirectly, might be involved in the controversy.
In a nutshell, the European Union, the U.S., Britain, and Canada announced “accusations” of human rights violations by Chinese officials in Xinjiang, China, the major exporter of Xinjijan cotton used globally. Resurfaced comments made by Western brands, mostly, mentioned they won’t source products from the region based on the alleged news. China denied these accusations.
The east-versus-west’s rift had a tenfold effect, though. Most of the global brands involved had been either shut in most of the e-commerce platforms in China or boycotted by Chinese citizens for spreading false rumors. The biggest controversy were the top Chinese celebrities separating from the global brands they used to support but are involved in the issue.
Chinese celebrities Huang Xuan and Song Qian announced their intention to cut ties with H&M. Zhou Dongyu and Song Weilong, Burberry ambassadors, have also expressed their separation from the luxury fashion house. Some other stars doing the same movement, are Eason Chan and Liu Yifen for Adidas and Lay Zhang for Calvin Klein and Converse.
About 40% of China’s cottons in 2019 are harvested by machinery. They deny any human rights abuse and China answers with sanctions on European lawmakers and institutions. As to how this affects the brands as China is one of the biggest markets in fashion, we have yet to see the developments.
Art by Raff Colmenar