FDRA (Footwear Distributors and Retailers of America) has recognized eight Asian shoe factories as “Responsible Footwear Manufacturers,” based on their compliance with FDRA's new Code of Conduct. The designations were given at a special reception for footwear factory executives across Asia on Nov. 4, in Dongguan, China. The event was attended by more than 100 factory owners and managers, who heard from several U.S. footwear executives on the importance of social compliance, FDRA's Code of Conduct and FDRA's Responsible Factory Program. Additionally, the following day FDRA hosted the 15th Annual Responsible Footwear Forum (RFF), also in Dongguan, attended by more than 125 factory managers, global brand executives and Chinese Government officials.

The factories that were cited by FDRA as Responsible Footwear Manufacturers include Dongguan Mayflower Footwear (China); Guangzhou Zhujiang Properwell Shoes (China); Hue Phong Footwear (Vietnam); Panyu Leader Footwear (China); Putian Chengyi Footwear (China); Right Rich VN (Vietnam); Serena Shoe (China); and Yangzhou FuHeng Shoes (China). These names were chosen by a committee of top footwear sourcing executives across the industry.

FDRA said that each month new footwear companies are asking their factories to adopt and implement its Code of Conduct, which has been translated into multiple languages.

In addition to the two above events in China, FDRA also held its first-ever summit in Vietnam, on Nov. 10, in the capital city Ho Chi Minh. More than 10 percent of U.S. footwear imports are being produced in Vietnam. Industry executives and experts briefed factory owners and managers at the event about the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) Free Trade Agreement (FTA), which will soon be negotiated, as well as ways to improve supply-chain efficiencies, current U.S. product safety regulations impacting footwear production and compliance issues. More than 150 factory representatives attended this event.