Jun 8, 2018
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Cone Denim debuts sustainable denim with Lenzing Group

Jun 8, 2018

Cone Denim has partnered with Lenzing Group to become the only North American supplier offering sustainable denim made in the US. The company debuted the new sustainable denim fabric at Kingpins in NY this week.

Cone Denim's new sustainable denim line - Lenzing

The fabric is made with wood pulp-derived Tencel and cotton and wood scrap fiber-derived Refibra lyocell. According to Lenzing Group, the Tencel x Refibra Lyocell fabric has a low environmental impact, a key innovation in denim manufacturing which traditionally uses a lot of water and causes harm to the environment with harsh dyes and finishing treatments.

Lenzing says the fabric is biodegradable in soil and seawater. The fabric therefore supports a the creation of a circular production system because it has "the ability to convert back to the elements that created them."

Additionally, the fabrics have a traceable fiber ID to verify authentic Tencel x Refibra have been used. Lenzing calls attention to this as a way that brands, retailers and consumers can achieve complete transparency.

"Denim consumers want authentic yet innovative products that maximize comfort, style, and performance,” said Kara Nicholas, vice president for product design and marketing at Cone Denim in a statement. "They also want to know that their favorite jeans are responsibly made and remain sustainable at the end of their lifecycle when finally discarded," she added.

Cone Denim is the first fabric supplier to offer sustainable denim made in North American mills. This will likely drive a shift in sourcing for selvage denim from its current hotspot in Japan.

Tricia Carey, director of global business development for denim at Lenzing commented, “When responsible denim manufacturers, like Cone Denim, create more environmentally considerate products that still address consumer demands, the entire apparel industry moves closer to a circular economy that benefits us all.”

Cone Denim is a 125 year old denim maker based in Greensboro, N.C. It was the last selvage denim producer in the US until it shut down its old plant last year.

The company debuted its new sustainable denim line at Kingpins New York, June 6-7.

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