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Global denim mills become eco-friendly

From reinventing traditional dyeing and recycling processes to working toward zero water denim, denim mills are enhancing their sustainable efforts. Italian mill Berto has developed new dyeing systems that can achieve intense casts that are still easy to wash. The dyes, sky and blue, require a lower number of dyeing tanks, lower amounts of water and electricity, and fewer treatments on the garments. The result is denim in a broad range of colors from light blue to black and gray.

Turkey-based mill Bossa is taking a multi-pronged approach to sustainability. It has increased its commitment to BCI cotton from 35 per cent of its total cotton consumption in 2016 to 60 per cent in 2017. In an effort to reduce water use in textile processing, the mill has completely changed the way the fabric is dyed. The ecological dyeing process uses less water and therefore, requires less amount of energy consumption. The resulting look is a bright color reminiscent of old Levi’s.

On fiber technology front, Bossa uses a new generation of elastic staple fiber made from polymer. The polymer is made with bio-based ingredients instead of petrochemicals, eliminating the dependence on fossil fuels. The unique molecular structure provides comfortable stretch and recovery (low growth, shrinkage and less puckering) even after multiple wears.