The denim business is working to become greener, remaking what has previously been known as a ‘dirty’ apparel category.
Bangladesh-based mill Beximco is part of this environmental evolution. Using a combination of responsible raw material choices and alternative processes that cut back on waste and water, Beximco is prioritizing sustainability. And as part of this push, the company uses TENCEL™ fiber innovations to create more environmentally friendly fabrics.
Here, Aamir Kiyani, Senior Manager Material Innovation at Beximco, explains how the company is adapting for greater traceability and sustainability.
Carved in Blue: Could you tell us about your business?
Aamir: Today, Beximco Group is the largest private-sector group in Bangladesh. As Beximco has grown over the years, the flagship platform now has operations and investments across a wide range of industries including textiles, pharmaceuticals, PPE, ceramics, real estate development, construction, trading, marine food, information and communication technologies, media, DTH, financial services and energy.
The group sells its products and services in the domestic Bangladesh market as well as international markets. Beximco is the largest employer in the private sector in Bangladesh and employs over 70,000 people worldwide. The group’s global clients include some of the world’s best-known brands including Inditex, C&A, Target, M&S, Primark, Lands’ End and Walmart.
Carved in Blue: Since Beximco opened in the 1990s, how have you seen the denim industry change?
Aamir: In the past, the denim industry was consuming a high amount of water, insecticides, pesticides and energy as well as using harmful chemicals in their processes, which has far-reaching effects on the industry’s potentialities.
Now, industries have serious attention towards sustainable environment-friendly solutions to change the face of Dirty Denim to the next level Green Denim. Beximco believes more of the denim industry is closer to sustainability by using low environmental impact fibers and chemicals, building more buyers’ confidence and more investment opportunities in denim manufacturing.
Carved in Blue: What are some emerging trends coming up in denim, and what textiles and garments is Beximco creating for these styles?
Aamir: There are lots of innovations happening, but most important is not in the product but the supply chain of the product, where end consumers are looking for complete traceability of what they are wearing. Beximco is working with blockchain technology to ensure the end consumer and their customer a complete transparency from fiber to end product that contains farmers, ginners, spinners, garment factories, wash processes—including energy, water, steam, air, etc. of each step during the product process.
Carved in Blue: In what ways are you using TENCEL™ fibers within your denim collections?
Aamir: In our latest collections, we mainly focused on TENCEL™ and blends due to its enhanced sustainable values and beauty of softness. We have a series of products using TENCEL™ fibers:
Hybrids is a collection of super soft fibers blended by using different yarn and construction to pamper the softness and comfort of our products.
Zero Cotton is revolutionary fabrics made of low-impact, cotton-touch man-made fiber that looks, feels and wear similar to cotton.
Carved in Blue: How is Beximco addressing sustainability through product innovation? What are some of your latest eco-minded developments in denim?
Aamir: At Beximco Denim, Water is Life & Natura is our most sustainable collection based on sustainable values such as TENCEL™ Modal with Indigo Color technology, which pre-dyes the fibers.
Nothing should go wasted in apparel during pre- or post-production, therefore Reborn is born to address a line that uses different sorts of recycling materials side by side with sustainable materials.
Advance Rainbow is a sulphur-based advanced dye method that saves water with the lowest environmental impact.
Transparent Hues colors use dramatically less water with lower environmental impact against the conventional dyeing process.
Our Laser Ready concept is developed for the latest laser/ozone-friendly laundries that reduce the EIM score drastically and achieve desired wash down quickly.
Bio Stretch is a new sustainable stretch standard set by Beximco that is based on biodegradable and recycled elastane.
Beximco’s latest developments include salt-free dyeing, Less Water Dyeing and Laser Friendly Ring Dyeing with material contents of organic cotton, TENCEL™, REFIBRA™ Technology, EcoMade T400, biodegradable/recycled elastane and recycled cotton.
Carved in Blue: Beximco’s strategy revolves around the triple bottom line of people, planet and profit. How are you balancing the first two with the third?
Aamir: In the business, profit is necessary. When a profit is made, a portion of it is invested back into the business so that it can grow, a portion is invested into the kingdom purpose it serves and a portion is given to the people.
The money we generate can be used over and over again. The general goal of a sustainable business strategy is to positively impact the environment, society or both while benefiting. Our responsibilities towards the society in all our activities are therefore directed to the well-being of society in general.
Carved in Blue: What does Carved in Blue mean to you?
Aamir: The Carved in Blue gives opportunities to celebrate community and bring the global denim family together to share positives about every day. Simply, this is unique platform to connect everyone with the sustainable future of denim.
Courtesy: Carved in Blue