Levi’s Makes the Cut
Having always been a fan of Levi’s, I was happy to find yet another article on their mindful and progressive ways.
GoodGuide, a US based consumer watchdog has ranked Levi Strauss & Co. top of a league table of denim brands for environmentally sound production practices and social performance.
GoodGuide, a privately funded organization that measures the health, environmental and social impacts of a range of consumer items rated Levi’s as a 7.4 on a 10 pt. scale. The criteria used by GoodGuide to determine the rankings cover a range of environmental and ethical standards including: sustainable product design, including whether the brand integrates life cycle assessment principles into product design and participates in sustainable supply chain organizations; and green production practices such as whether the brand publishes a Restricted Substances List which limits use of hazardous chemicals and sources at least some of its fibre from sustainable producers.
The assessment also covered consumer education initiatives, including whether the brand designs products to reduce the environmental impacts of owning its products or educates consumers about the steps they can take to reduce the amounts of energy or water used to clean and dry clothing; and a ‘commitment’ to transparency criteria, including whether the brand publicly discloses a list of its suppliers and provides consumers with life cycle impact data on its operations or its products.
“Our highest rated apparel brands work closely with their supply chains to improve working conditions and minimize environmental impacts,” GoodGuide said. “The best brands disclose the identity of their suppliers, audit how they perform on labor issues and make public the steps they take to respond to violations. They also design their products using life cycle principles and educate consumers about how to reduce impacts.”
In particular, the GoodGuide noted that Levi’s scored particularly well on water use. Last year, the company introduced its Water Less Jeans method which removes the water from the stone washing process and instead, uses an ozone bleaching formula in the garment washing. In addition, Levi’s said it has also reduced the number of washing machine cycles by combining multiple wet cycle processes into a single wet process.