Retailers are under increasing pressure to take a share of the responsibility for the life cycle social and environmental impacts of the products they sell. As globalisation gathers momentum, so action to improve retail performance will inevitably impact on suppliers and subcontractors in developing countries. But these producers often have little understanding of the driving forces for higher standards and the coming trends that could affect their export performance. ~To explore these issues, Sustaining the Rag Trade assesses the challenge of sustainable development for the UK clothing retail sector. The report reviews the state of the sector and the critical issues that face the rag trade at each stage of the clothing chain. It also profiles the current social and environmental policies of leading clothing retailers, including BHS, C&A, Littlewoods, Next and Marks and Spencer and recommends some practical options for improving performance in partnership with suppliers.