Beyonce's Ivy Park Denies Sweatshop Allegations, Plus How She Teased Her New Brand

Beyonce's new clothing line, Ivy Park, is denying the allegations that their workers in Sri Lanka work in unethical conditions.

Beyonce's surprise new collaboration with British retailer Topshop made headlines when it officially launched on April 14. Topshop's website crashed as soon as the athletic line was on sale. In her cover story with Elle, Beyonce revealed the reason why she launched the line was to "empower" and "inspire" women throughout the world.

Now Queen Bey has been getting flak for collaborating with a brand that's known for having sweatshop-like conditions. It's not entirely her fault, though. Topshop is known for producing fast fashion, a term used by retailers to describe that their designs are produced quickly in factories. It's an unfortunate and common theme among large retailers.

On Tuesday, May 17, a headline from VICE read, "How Much It Sucks to Be a Sri Lankan Worker Making Beyoncé's New Clothing Line."

The VICE article stems directly from the Sunday Sun's expose on Beyonce's new athletic line. It reveals that the workers only earn 64 cents per hour. One seamstress only makes $6.23 in a day. One sewing machine operator reveals that she can barely survive on the wage.

One machinist was quoted as saying to the British tabloid, "When they talk about women and empowerment this is just for the foreigners. They want the foreigners to think everything is OK."

The company has released a statement on Monday, claiming that they have a "rigorous" ethical trading program.

"We are proud of our sustained efforts in terms of factory inspections and audits, and our teams worldwide work very closely with our suppliers and their factories to ensure compliance," the company said to Women's Wear Daily.

When Beyonce launched her new clothing line on March 31, she released a statement exclaiming her pride and joy behind it. In her statement, she also explained why she wanted to collaborate with Ivy Park.

"My goal with Ivy Park is to push the boundaries of athletic wear and to support and inspire women who understand that beauty is more than your physical appearance."
Little do fans know, she first teased her new clothing line a few years ago. Mashable revealed that she was seen wearing her new clothing line in her "7/11" music video. Then in a performance video for the song, the visuals behind her displayed huge clues about her upcoming line. Beyoncé and her girl squad were filmed wearing the Ivy Park jersey and knee pads that weren't available yet in stores.

Then, at Super Bowl 50, you may not have noticed her marching band flashing gold Ivy Park logos on their drums in front of the 115 million people who watched that night. Check out the proof for yourself in the videos below.

Beyoncé doesn't do traditional advertising, though. She's known for using visual advertising like she's know for making visual albums. She teased the release of her new album, Lemonade, last year by posting Instagram photos of herself smelling lemons and having an ice cold glass of lemonade, of course.

Whether you want to work out in Beyonce's clothes or feel like the diva herself, you can check it out at Topshop and Nordstrom. The athleisure line includes plenty of workout separates like crew neck T-shirts, colorblock sports bras, printed bomber jackets, bodysuits, and leggings. Now you don't need Beyonce's income to buy any of the items. Most of the items in the collection are very affordable and run from $14 for a sweatband all the way to $265 for a full-length color body block.

The bomber jacket costs $90, while the bodysuit is a reasonable $58. No matter what, you'll be feeling yourself like Queen Bey does on a daily basis.

In a video for Ivy Park, Beyonce is seen going back to her roots in Texas, where she grew up.

"Before I hit the stage, I go back to that park. That park became my strength. That park is what made me who I am. Where's your park?"
Despite the controversy surrounding Ivy Park, Beyonce's new line has already sold out in stores and online. What are your thoughts on her new collection? Are you surprised to hear that it's made in a sweatshop? Sound off below in the comments section.

[Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images for People.com]