A new garment finishing center in India marks a series of firsts for the denim industry. Gurugram, India-based apparel manufacturer Anish India Exports (AIE) and sustainable finishing technology company Jeanologia have partnered to launch what they say is the first zero-waste garment finishing plant. It is also the first eco-efficient operational center completely led by women.
AIE Laundry 5.Zero is designed to contribute to AIE’s efforts to drive change in India, empowering women and establishing a new operational model that brings the apparel industry into the digital era.
The plant combines Jeanologia’s sustainable technologies—laser, G2 ozone, e-Flow and Colorbox—with H2 Zero, the company’s first water recycling system. This combination, Jeanologia stated, guarantees zero discharge, eliminates all the processes that are harmful for workers and the environment and reduces total water usage in the finishing process by 85 percent.
The targets align with Jeanologia’s Mission Zero goal to dehydrate and detoxify the denim industry by 2025.
The plant’s location in India is significant, as the region is home to many who work in the textile and apparel industry. But despite its thriving workforce, women are often underrepresented in the space. AIE is committed to providing better representation for women throughout its business, and aims to achieve that goal in part through the new finishing center.
AIE Laundry’s chief sustainability officer Ishita Tandon noted that a more diverse leadership base is both healthy for the business and for overall female empowerment. “Our goal is that diversity in leadership is not only healthy for the business, but also that women can show their full creative potential and empower them throughout the company,” she said.
Social progress is a key part of sustainability, and many throughout the denim supply chain are bolstering their efforts for better employee support. Pakistan-based denim mill Artistic Milliners recently launched a pilot program that provides its female garment workers with technological and life skills training, and Kontoor Brands and Levi’s previously rolled out global initiatives that empower low-income women working in global supply chains.
For Jeanologia, business is a force for good. “Women are rising up in India, and this project embraces these challenges,” said Carmen Silla, marketing manager at Jeanologia. “We are convinced that small actions can make big changes, and a sustainable garment plant led by women in India is the best way to start.”