“When it comes to sustainability and honesty, there is still a world to be gained in the fashion industry.”
Green investment specialists DOEN Participaties and the Sustainable Economy Participation Fund Noord-Holland (PDENH) have announced that they are making a joint investment of €1 million in MUD Jeans in order to help the Dutch brand develop “circular” jeans.
In addition to this news, MUD Jeans also announced that it wanted to use the funds to help with its expansion plans in the UK, Scandinavia and France.
MUD Jeans currently uses 40% recycled cotton for its jeans production. According to the company, it not only develops jeans in a sustainable way, but also takes people and society into account.
Traditionally, jeans made with recycled cotton have had to be mixed with organic cotton to produce a sturdy pair of jeans, a MUD Jeans (@mudjeansNL) spokeswoman told Bio Market Insights. However, with this new investment the company aims to develop its collaboration with Netherlands-based Saxion University in order to bump up the percentage of recycled cotton it currently uses for its jeans from 40% to 100%.
“When it comes to sustainability and honesty, there is still a world to be gained in the fashion industry. MUD Jeans shows that it is possible and is therefore a sustainable leader and an example for many,” said DOEN Participaties Impact Investment Manager Marc Rasmussen.
He added: “We are therefore very proud that we can support MUD Jeans in its mission to launch 100% recycled denim jeans for (next) year, we do that by investing €500,000 together with PDENH.”
MUD Jeans CEO and founder Bert van Son echoed Rasmussen’s views and said he was “very happy” with this investment, as it made it possible for the company to produce “the most popular and most polluting garment sustainably”.
The fashion industry is one of the most polluting industries in the world and it takes around 7,000 litres of water to produce one pair of jeans. However, MUD Jeans stated that it uses 1,500 litres of water to produce one pair of its jeans.
In 2013, MUD Jeans introduced its ‘Lease a Jeans’ concept, where consumers can not only buy the brand’s jeans, but can lease them as well. The main objective of the initiative is to help the brand keep track of where their resources and products are. In addition to this, customers receive a discount if they return their old jeans to the brand.
MUD Jeans is currently being sold in 29 countries through 300 retailers across Germany and the Netherlands.
A MUD Jeans spokeswoman told Bio Market Insights that the brand was seeing strong demand for sustainable jeans in the UK, Scandinavia and France.
She also said that the brand sources its recycled material to produce new jeans through a variety of methods. Consumers can send their old jeans through the post via a free label from MUD Jeans. Retailers can also participate in a take-back scheme. All in all, MUD Jeans collects jeans that consist of more than 95% cotton and sends them to Spain-based recycling facility Recovertex. These jeans are shredded and mixed with new yarn to make new jeans.
In 2016, Bio Market Insights spoke with MUD Jeans CEO and founder Bert van Son. When asked where he would like his company to be in five years’ time, he said: “I would like to be able to sell one million jeans as well as recycling them to be able to really make an impact.”