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This Denim Brand Just Earned the ‘Holy Grail’ of Eco Clothing Certifications

For a being a small company, Dutch denim brand Mud Jeans is making mighty strides in sustainability.

The company announced last week that nearly its entire denim collection, or 41 styles, received the Nordic Swan Ecolabel certification, the official ecolabel of Nordic countries.

The Nordic Swan Ecolabel evaluates a product’s total lifecycle from raw material to recycling. The certification works to reduce the environmental impact from production and consumption of goods and make it easier for consumers to make eco-conscious purchasing decisions through labeling.

According to Mud Jeans nine out of 10 Nordic consumers recognize the Nordic Swan Ecolabel and half of the consumer look for it when they shop.

Mud Jeans described the Nordic Swan Ecolabel as the “holy grail of Scandinavian clothing certifications” on its website.

Nordic Swan Ecolabel
Nordic Swan Ecolabel

“It rarely happens that a company can certify so many products in such a short period of time. This is mainly due to our transparent and flexible supply chain and structured way of using materials. We work with one fabric mill and one garment supplier. We don’t strive to only make one part of our jeans circular and sustainable but we look at the bigger picture,” the company wrote.

Mud Jeans, which stepped up its circularity efforts by joining the Ellen MacArthur Foundation in October, is known for its leasing program that allows consumers to keep, switch or recycle their jeans after one year.

The brand works with one denim mill (Tejidos Royo) and one garment supplier (Yousstex International). All of its jeans contain post-consumer recycled denim and organic cotton and are finished with sustainable laser and ozone technologies.

Being established as a transparent brand with a short supply chain from day one has helped streamline the process, yet the internal audit for the certification took more than a year to complete. Through the process, Mud Jeans had to tweak some of its materials like adopt 100 percent recyclable buttons, it was all for the better.

“This process has offered us 100 percent insight in our supply chain,” the company noted. “This process confirmed how sustainable we actually are. From not using any plastic polybags to eliminating the use of potassium permanganate to using waste as a resource.”