Levi's stitches plastic bottles into latest denim collection

Levi's stitches plastic bottles into latest denim collection

Levi Strauss & Co is set to launch a new denim collection incorporating 3.5 million recycled bottles to reduce the environmental impact of its products and promote recycling to consumers.

A year after the launch of its Water<Less collection that reduced the amount of water used in manufacturing jeans and jackets by an average of 20 percent, Levi's this week confirmed that its next spring collection will include a new Waste<Less range.

The Waste<Less denim trousers will each include at least 20 percent post-consumer waste, equating to eight 300ml to 500ml plastic bottles per pair.

The denim will include PET plastic and other polyethylene terephthalate materials, such as brown beer bottles and black food trays that have been collected by local recycling programs across the U.S.

The bottles and food trays will be sorted by color, crushed into flakes and made into a polyester fiber, which will then be mixed with cotton fiber to create cotton yarn by Levi's partner company Cone Denim.

Levi's said the resulting fabric will also have an undertone of the color of the bottles used.

"By adding value to waste, we hope to change the way people think about recycling, ultimately incentivizing them to do more of it," said James Curleigh, global president of Levi's brand. "This collection proves that you don't have to sacrifice quality, comfort or style to give an end a new beginning."

Levi's is the latest in a series of high-street clothing brands to use post-consumer waste in its products, including Nike and Adidas.

Image of denim clothing provided by Dmitry Kalinovsky via Shutterstock.

This piece originally appeared on Business Green and is reprinted with permission.