Denim is a must-have apparel item in the fashion loop. Eco-friendly denim has become the new trend and is in the global spotlight. Crystal International Group Limited spearheads the manufacturing of sustainable denim products to make denim go green by adopting greener production methods. The eco denim factory of Crystal in China, Zhongshan Yida Apparel Ltd., has long been exploring new ways to sustainable manufacturing.
Recently, the factory has initiated a new sustainable denim collection named 4Zero: four “Zero” measures in the laundry process, including zero manual work, zero potassium permanganate (“PP”), zero hypochlorite and zero stone.
Blue Denim, Green Approach
As an extension of Crystal’s existing sustainable Eco Blu collection, 4Zero is the innovative process created in Smart Laundry. These new processes can reduce water usage by up to 90% and chemicals up to 70% when compared to the current conventional eco wash method. No manual work aims to minimise labour work by increasingly adopting laser technology to create various levels of fades.
No PP means to utilise environmentally friendly chemicals to partially remove the denim colour and oxidise the denim fabric. During the washing process, eco chemicals were applied instead of PP spray. Similarly, hypochlorite is also traditionally used to bleach and decolourise indigo from denim. Crystal uses eco chemicals, instead of hypochlorite, as the oxidising agents to create different oxidising effects. To assure the eco-friendliness, the chemical used in the 4Zero washing processes are ZDHC MRSL conformance level 3 chemicals, the highest level of ZDHC conformity.
In addition, washing stones are traditionally used to cause wear and tear of the fabric, and to generate stonewash look, where denim is required to be washed several times. Stones are abolished to eliminate the problem of environmental disposition of waste, wastewater, as well as the damage to machines resulting from stone washing process. By taking on board these four “Zero” during production, Crystal can pursue the eco-washing strategy while achieving a more sustainable denim manufacturing.
Better washing performance, Lesser environmental impacts
With the replacement of the traditional washing techniques with the greener approaches, the nice appearance of the worn-out look and the distinctive blue hue of denim could still be maintained, and a low water ratio in washing process can also be achieved. The 4Zero strategy can reduce water and chemical consumption during manufacturing process, thus minimising the environmental impacts and achieving a better rating at Environmental Impact Measuring (EIM) tool, which calculates the environmental impact of water consumption, energy consumption, chemical consumption and impact on workers’ health. After applying 4Zero, the rating can be improved to green (low impact process), which falls into the best impact category.
New 4Zero collection – Just around the corner
“Our R&D team endeavours to step up efforts to innovate sustainable denim production and establish it as another sustainable choice for our customers”, said Mr Miles Lam, Assistant General Manager of Product Development of Crystal Denim. Crystal is about to launch a series of products as 4Zero collection. Stay tuned for the new series.