UNIQLO Sustainability

Feature:Making more
sustainable jeans
Jeans Innovation
Center

The Jeans Innovation Center is a research and development facility based in Los Angeles. Experts from around the world gather here to develop new jeans that utilize innovative technologies and new materials.

Jeans-making Process Requires Water

Cultivating raw cotton requires sunshine, soil and water. Turning raw cotton into thread also requires lots of water during the indigo dyeing and the final washing processes, which is then drained as wastewater. Here’s three key points on water resource sustainability.

Sustainability Measure 1

Water for raw cotton cultivation

UNIQLO is a member of the non-profit Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) that supports sustainable cotton production. BCI seeks to spread better cotton cultivation techniques by teaching producers about appropriate water usage, and the uses of pesticides and other chemicals.
BCI English https://bettercotton.org/

Sustainability Measure 2

Water for fabric production

UNIQLO works with its partner factories to purify and reuse wastewater generated during production processes, and to reduce wastewater volumes.

Sustainability Measure 3

Water for garment production

Finished jeans are washed together
with stones in a washing machine
for a popular faded look.

Technology that reduces water in denim finishing process

Conventional jeans finishing processes use large volumes of water. The newly developed Blue Cycle Denim technology utilizes both advanced equipment such as laser processing and nanobubble ozone washing machines, as well as the expertise of designers to reduce water use by up to 99%*. The entire line up of UNIQLO jeans will be produced with this technology by 2020.

* When compared between UNIQLO 2017 and 2018 Men’s Regular Fit Jeans

Washing with Eco Stones

UNIQLO replaced conventional pumice stones used in the jeans washing process with artificial eco stones which can be reused over a long period of time. By incorporating eco stones in our process, we eliminated the need for natural stone mining and reduced the amount of pumice stones in wastewater, significantly reducing our environmental impact.

Distressing jeans with laser technology

By incorporating laser technology, we decreased the need for manual labor to distress jeans and reduced our use of water.