A good pair of jeans is a chief element of a modern day wardrobe, which is both fashionable and durable. Large amount of greenhouse gases are released from the denim manufacturing processes and its impact on the environment is not so happening, as this ever fashionable garment. However, denim companies are invariably trying to reduce these environmental consequences with their sustainable approach.
Jeans, a global trend, sells approximately 6 billion pairs around the world every year. It is anticipated that the sales from jeans will cross $65 billion by 2015. In spite of foreseeing such flourishing scenario in denim business, denim companies are facing pressure to change the methods of manufacturing jeans to tackle the environmental issues.
With such staggering figures of sales, it is obvious that jeans manufacturing processes have a major impact on the health of workers and the earth. It is a known fact that workers are at the risk of tuberculosis or silicosis during the sandblasting process to give that perfect 'worn out' look. At the same time heavy toxic methods of production emit harmful gases which impact the environment.
Although, at a glance manufacturing jeans in the conventional method may not seem to be a big issue in terms of sustainability, but if the size of the sector and the methods of jeans production are considered, it will make a big difference. One can imagine the impact of the denim sector on the environment, if all the jeans in the world are produced using eco-friendly methods.
Fortunately, many denim companies today are striving hard to embrace greener methods and are also making effort to develop new techniques of producing jeans, as a part of their business strategies to protect the environment. They have understood the importance and the need to build a sustainable business.
In addition, the denim companies must have a clear understanding of the practices carried out by the suppliers. Although, the supply chain is spread in different countries but, when they compromise on their ethical and environmental standards, the brand reputation is damaged.
Currently, cotton prices are all time high and there is a rising demand from the customers for jeans. In this tricky situation, manufacturers also need to adhere to the concept of sustainability. Sustainable jeans is not a concept that has been introduced in developed nations only, but also in developing countries like India and China. Indian designers have come up eco- friendly denims for their customers.
These jeans are manufactured from 100% organic cotton without using bleach. To get the desired denim look, they use two types of processes. One is the wet process wherein simple enzymes are used to decrease water wastage and the second is the dry method. This method uses various techniques such as scraping, whiskering, grinding and distressing. Instead of chemical dyes, vegetable dyes are utilized to get the authentic indigo shade of denim.