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Interview with Zennure Danisman

Industry Speak
Zennure Danisman
Zennure Danisman
Marketing and Washing Manager
Orta Anadolu
Orta Anadolu

Sustainability is 'business as usual' for us

Since its inception in 1953, Orta Anadolu has been weaving a denim heritage passed from generation to generation. Orta transformed from a spinning and weaving company to a denim manufacturer in 1985. Today, Orta operates in Turkey with a production capacity of 60 million metres of denim. Marketing and Washing Manager ZennureDanisman speaks about sustainability and denim.

How different are denim fabrics today as compared to those manufactured 10 years ago?

Today, trends are no longer as reliable as they were. Choices shift, climate changes, expectations vary, target consumers and their preferences change. We believe denim has and will always have a special handprint on culture. Denim, this cultural icon, is in transition.  We support this transition of denim and transform our process accordingly. 

Today, awareness of issues around sustainability and ethics is becoming a key concern for many in their apparel purchases, especially for millennials, often called the eco-modern generation whose purchasing decisions are becoming more discerning. According to the Millennial Impact Report, 87 per cent of millennials would be more loyal to a company that helps them contribute to social and environmental issues. 

Our sustainability journey started at the beginning of 2000 with the use of organic cotton. Since then, our technologists and developers have been working to create the most advanced processes that yield superior quality fibres, recollect and re-life materials to reduce resource use. And today's eco-conscious generation's demands drive us to move forward to redefine, remix, reconstruct, remodel, and most importantly, rethink our business.

With the new, biodesigned and sustainable materials, we believe in the importance of the innovative solution in denim production. We believe that scarcity should be replaced with abundance that biology will create by recreating and reshaping nature. So we ask ourselves, what would denim look like in a world of abundance? To answer this question, we partnered with the Biodesign Challenge (BDC) in 2019. BDC tasks teams from top design schools to create denim products, reimagine alternative raw materials and rethink processes using biotechnology. By partnering design students with top-tier scientists, the challenge provides a new platform for envisioning positive and transformational applications for sustainable denim manufacturing and alternatives to cotton and other natural fibres.

As a continuum to our abundance story, this season, we are embracing sustainability from a technological point of view: Denimimicry: Denim + Biomimicry. Biomimicry is the design and production of materials modelled on elements of nature to solve complex human problems. Inspired by biomimicry, our goal is to create the eco net-positive fabrics, denim with an almost infinite life. We are investing in the biological and technological ways we can infinitely expand the life of every fibre, every drop of water, every biochemical, every dye, every finish and every ingredient ever in our creation of denim. We choose to focus on technology creating in harmony with nature rather than conquering it. Our aim is to create a more robust denim ecosystem where art and technology meet sustainability for infinite possibilities of denim.

Which are your major markets for denim fabrics? Which new ones do you plan to explore?

We have touch points in every major market for denim. With our showrooms and offices all around the world, we keep our dialogue with clients accessible and have a hands-on relationship with different markets.

Which weaves and finishes are evergreen? What new weaves and finishes are you working on?

Orta translates 65 years of craftsmanship that optimises the advantages of laser technology, pioneering the link between art, technology and sustainability. In that perspective, Light Force delivers fabrics with enhanced response characteristics for laser finishing. The Light Force denim fabrics allow for relatively fast colour change in response to laser, colour changes in hue from indigo blue to white, many gray scale levels, and maintains strength and stretch properties. 

Additionally, our iconic finishing process Alchemy permits the use of less resin than other mercerisation techniques, reducing the use of softener, resin, anti-pilling enzyme in garment finish. Alchemy is a finish processing that delivers amazing characteristics, including improved lustre, smoothness and provides durable and fresh look after multiple washes.

Orta Lab also developed clay-coated fabrics, called Halys, for our AW20/21 and SS21 Collections.  Clay is a natural, environment-friendly material with many positive characteristics, which evolves into Halys. 

What are the trends for Spring/Summer 2020?

We are at an interesting time in the industrial race for the lead in sustainable fashion and circular manufacturing processes. Every fabric mill has a mission in place; Orta is the leading denim manufacturer who has been fulfilling its mission since 2010.

Our aim is to establish the foundation of a new platform for thinking about materially smart design for a resilient future.

For our SS21 Denimimicry (Denim meets Biomimicry) collection, we have a unique Gen H capsule made from eco-wise hemp. Hemp is naturally anti-bacterial, anti-microbial, super soft, biodegradable and breathable.

We are also working on increasing the usage of recycled and sustainable materials. Around 80 per cent of the fibres used in our SS21 Denimimicry collection have at least one sustainable characteristic; organic, recycled, biodegradable, regenerated, biobased or recyclable. This season we have one word for the eco net-positive fabrics: The Immortalist: Denim with an (almost) infinite life. Our 'The Immortalist' is the ultimate sustainability commitment in a fabric with the components; organic cotton + TencelxRefibra + EcoMade T400.
Published on: 30/12/2019

DISCLAIMER: All views and opinions expressed in this column are solely of the interviewee, and they do not reflect in any way the opinion of Fibre2Fashion.com.

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