American fashion company Ralph Lauren, in collaboration with materials science leader Dow, has developed a complete guidebook centered on the sustainable production of dyed cotton using the Ecofast Pure sustainable textile treatment.
With step-by-step instruction on how to utilize the Dow-produced Ecofast Pure system, the open-source manual aims to inspire the industry to include the eco-friendly dyeing method into further supply chains. The cotton treatment was developed by Ralph Lauren in response to the excessive use of water in dyeing, which uses 90% fewer process chemicals, 50% less water, and 40% less energy.
Mary Draves, chief sustainability at Dow, as fashion supply chains recover from the pandemic's effects, there is a key window to incorporate more sustainable practices into production processes. By partnering now to scale a less resource-intensive dyeing method, they can contribute to long-term solutions to important issues like climate change and water resiliency.
With the launch of its Color on Demand platform in March of this year, Ralph Lauren has already taken moves toward expanding in this area. The multi-phase system, which brings together four sustainable inventors, aims to establish a scalable zero wastewater cotton dyeing process.
The premium brand also indicated that by 2025, it plans to use the platform to color over 80% of its solid cotton products.
Halide Alagöz, Ralph Lauren's chief product, and sustainability officer, said that they need to find scalable solutions that have never been considered before if they want to protect their world for the next generation.
They’re proud to have partnered with Dow on this innovation and to share it openly with the industry, in the hopes that it will help transform how they preserve and use water in their global supply chain. This necessitates close and often unexpected collaboration, as well as a willingness to break down exclusivity barriers.
Ralph Lauren first included Ecofast Pure into its product categories as part of their 2020 Tokyo Olympics Team USA collection. Aside from its commitment to water conservation, the company has also pursued other sustainable initiatives, such as the creation of eco-friendly collections, such as the Polo Ralph Lauren line for the US Open Tennis Championships. The capsule's items were made from recycled plastic bottles and tennis ball cans collected by the fashion house at the last competition, and there were styles for both players and staff.
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