FASHION retailer Boohoo has cut more than 400 firms from its supply network after allegations over low pay and working conditions for factory staff.

The company, which maintains a major distribution hub in Burnley and has recently announced a major expansion in the town, revealed the list of companies it was no longer working with in a bid to repair its reputation after allegations last year that some factories in the UK working for the firm were paying staff as little as £3.50 an hour and had working conditions which did not meet lockdown restrictions.

Boohoo's new list of 78 approved suppliers across 100 factories represents a significant drop on the 500 suppliers it had previously identified before the allegations hit.

Chief executive John Lyttle said: “This is the not the end of a project for us at Boohoo but the beginning of a new way of working with our suppliers.

“The publication of our UK supply chain list marks another step on our journey towards greater transparency and embedding positive change, not only in our own organisation, but through the wider network of businesses that make up our supply chain.”

In the wake of last year's low pay revelations, the company commissioned an independent review of the business to be carried out by Alison Levitt QC.

In September 2020, Ms Levitt's review found that there were “serious issues” in the company’s supply chain.

The report also found that chief executive John Lyttle and other senior staff were sent an email in December 2019 describing one factory as having “the worst working conditions that I have seen in the UK."

In response to Ms Levitt's findings, Boohoo has since pledged to strengthen internal controls, overhaul its suppliers and is also launching a sustainability strategy, called Up Front, to reduce its carbon footprint.

The firm also hired judge Sir Brian Leveson to supervise the firm’s Agenda for Change reforms.

In his second report published in March, Sir Brian noted that improved supplier audits have changed the way the industry is run as well as Boohoo’s efforts to embed a new way of working.

The company meanwhile has also said it has “ceased doing business with a number of manufacturers who were unable to demonstrate the high standard of transparency required, despite being provided with opportunities to address any issues identified in the auditing process”.

It added that it asked the remaining suppliers to bring their so-called cut-make-trim units in-house “to allow for greater oversight and remove the issue of unapproved subcontracting”.