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Levi Strauss Creates New Jeans With 28% Less Water

Levi Strauss Creates New Jeans With 28% Less Water

Iconic denim company Levi Strauss has announced a new line of jeans designed to dramatically reduce the water needed to produce each pair of pants.

The company is calling the new line “Water<Less” jeans, and thanks to making simple changes to the jeans finishing process, each pair boasts an average water footprint that is 28 percent smaller than most brands–and as much as 96 percent smaller in some jeans products.

Three ways that Levi’s is cutting water from the jean-making process:

  • Reducing the number of washing machine cycles by combining multiple wet cycle processes into a single wet process
  • Incorporating ozone processing into the garment washing
  • Removing the water from the stone wash

This means that the the company will be able to create the 1.5 millions pairs of jeans for 2011 while saving 16 million liters of water. And they’re not content to keep these water saving techniques all to themselves.

Levi’s is also sponsoring a conservation campaign that will encourage its customers to reduce the water used in the care of the jeans. An ad for the campaign reminds each customer that by simply washing their pants every two weeks (instead of once a week) they will be able to collectively save over 80 million liters of water.

That’s the equivalent 2,682,119 5-minute showers, 13.4 million toilet flushes, or 84,787 years of drinking water for one person.

Levi’s launched the Water<Less jeans as a follow up to several other water-saving measures: a care tag that includes water- and energy-saving advice, and an Eco Index used to measure the environmental and resource impacts of outdoor products.

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Image Credit: Flickr – yeryabs

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Beth Buczynski

Beth is a freelance writer and editor living in the Rocky Mountain West. So far, Beth has lived in or near three major U.S. mountain ranges, and is passionate about protecting the important ecosystems they represent. Follow Beth on Twitter as @ecosphericblog or check out her blog.

94 comments

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10:36AM PST on Feb 27, 2013

Ok, this is a repost from 2010. That noted, why hasn't Levi's gone lower water across the board?
As Sara said in 2010, why buy pre faded?
I remember as a kid getting jeans that didn't fit until after a few washes and dryings. We bought soft and fade to get them flexible and somewhat lighter.
Give me women's cut 501s with dark indigo and I'll fade them...but have to make the jean sturdy enough to be worn for years.

10:34AM PST on Feb 27, 2013

Ok, this is a repost from 2010. That noted, why hasn't Levi's gone lower water across the board?
As Sara said in 2010, why buy pre faded?
I remember as a kid getting jeans that didn't fit until after a few washes and dryings. We bought soft and fade to get them flexible and somewhat lighter.
Give me women's cut 501s with dark indigo and I'll fade them...but have to make the jean sturdy enough to be worn for years.

6:08AM PST on Feb 27, 2013

great news

1:02AM PST on Feb 27, 2013

Good news.

6:20AM PDT on Jul 10, 2011

Thank you

5:02AM PDT on Jun 20, 2011

Thanks for the article.

1:30PM PST on Mar 2, 2011

Great news! I hope a lot of other manufacturers will follow their example.

1:54AM PST on Mar 2, 2011

great idea,so eco friendly,i like it a lot!

7:01AM PST on Jan 18, 2011

Good news but the use of ozone may be a concern. And I've just learnt that to decolour denim they use GM enzymes.

4:40PM PST on Jan 14, 2011

way to go Levi's!

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