about carter’s

A Message from Our CEO

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To My Fellow Stakeholders:
Over the past 100 years, Carter’s has built a brand known by generations for enduring and essential core products for families with young children. Many still recall our iconic brand slogan: “If they could just stay little ‘til their Carter’s wear out.” That slogan captures our focus on building product offerings that are durable, sustainable, and able to be handed down from one generation to the next.
Sustainability is important to Carter’s, our consumers, employees, and shareholders. We believe our focus on environmental, social, and governance (“ESG”) strategies strengthens Carter’s business model and relevance for every generation of consumers.
To ensure the continued success of our brands, we are executing our Raise the Future™ ESG strategy built on three pillars:
  • Product: Grow sustainable product offerings
  • Planet: Reduce our carbon footprint
  • People: Uplift our workers and communities
Our annual social responsibility report outlines our goals, initiatives and progress with each of our strategic pillars, and reflects our continued commitment to transparency and accountability.
Growing our Sustainable Offerings
Recent surveys indicate that consumers view product durability as a leading sustainability attribute. For generations, we have designed our products to withstand the everyday experiences of childhood. Our focus on quality and durability provides consumers with products that can be handed down, donated, or recycled, which benefits the environment by reducing waste and overconsumption.
Our talented merchants and designers are focused on developing our product offerings using more sustainable materials. In 2022, we continued to transition to more sustainably grown cotton through the Better Cotton Initiative and introduced LENZING™ ECOVERO™, a sustainable viscose fiber sourced from responsibly managed forests. We also expanded the scope of our Little Planet® product offerings, made largely with organic cotton.
In the years ahead, we plan to increase the availability of sustainable choices across all of our product lines, making it easier for our consumers to choose products that align with their values.
Our focus on responsible sourcing helps us mitigate supply chain risks and strengthens the resilience of our business model in an evolving consumer market.
Each year, our suppliers must verify compliance with our Vendor Code of Ethics, and we regularly audit our suppliers to ensure compliance. In 2022, we expanded our ability to trace the origin of cotton used in our materials to confirm that there is no forced labor within our supply chain. Additionally, we updated our Restricted Substances List for chemicals used in the manufacturing process.
Reducing our Carbon Footprint
We continue to reduce our impact on the environment and recognize there is more to do. To identify new opportunities, we annually evaluate risks associated with climate change and weather patterns.
We are taking a holistic approach to minimizing our carbon and environmental footprint, which includes reducing greenhouse gas emissions and waste. Since 2019, our Scope 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions from our direct operations have decreased by 28%.
We have also engaged our suppliers on our emissions reduction journey. To date, suppliers who represent 17% of our spending on goods and services have set science-based reduction goals.
In addition to reducing our emissions, we have a goal of reducing the volume of waste generated by our business. In 2022, we diverted 90% of distribution center waste from landfills through our reduction, recycling, and reuse initiatives. Our carton reuse program helped us avoid the use (and related costs) of more than 1,300 tons of corrugated cardboard. Also, since 2019, we have reduced the number of styles that require an additional wash during the manufacturing process by 50%.
Uplifting our Workers and Communities
Uplifting our workers and communities is fundamental to our Raise the Future strategy. We are dedicated to diversifying our consumers and workforce as we welcome Gen Z, the most diverse generation in our country’s history, into our stores and workforce.
We believe in creating an environment that invites Gen Z and other generations to shop and work with us. By focusing on product styling, inclusive marketing, and a store environment that appeals to all consumers, we expect to attract and retain more diverse consumers and employees in the years ahead.
To accomplish our growth and ESG objectives, we will rely on the dedication and commitment of our nearly 16,000 employees worldwide. In one of the strongest job markets in many years and historically low unemployment, our retention of employees remains high.
Last year, we provided our employees with a range of career advancement opportunities, including our Accelerated Development Program, Mentor Program, Executive Development Program, and training to develop managerial, leadership, and technical skills to support their careers at Carter’s. In 2022, we launched a new tuition-free degree program called Advance You™ to help our employees reach their full potential.
We are proud to support communities through our charitable giving, volunteerism, and our supplier diversity program. Last year, together with our consumers and employees, we donated over $10.5 million in charitable contributions and product donations, with an emphasis on helping families with young children. Our employees also devoted more than 20,000 hours to supporting our communities, especially those in need.
Our Commitment
We are committed to making a positive impact on the world.
Through the execution of our ESG strategies, we expect to lead the market by serving the needs of all families with young children, ensuring the continued appeal of our brands to the next generation of consumers, mitigating risks inherent in our business, and improving the performance of Carter’s for all of our stakeholders.
I am grateful for the support of our stakeholders as we continue this journey together. We look forward to sharing our progress with you in the years to come.
Michael D. Casey Chairman & Chief Executive Officer