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This Pakistani Mill is Turning Recycled Denim Into Hangtags

Sustainability means looking at every aspect of a garment, right down to the hangtags.

Artistic Fabric & Garment Industries (AFGI) is collaborating with Denimite, an organization that creates products made from post-consumer denim textile scraps, to create a hangtag made from recycled denim. AFGI, a Pakistan-based denim manufacturer, will include the label with its products as a part of its mission to “lead the denim industry towards a sustainable future.”

The manufacturer already employs recycled textiles in production and development using a state-of-the-art shredding facility, and as part of the collaboration, AFGI will now send a portion of these scraps to Denimite to create the hangtags.

Denimite combines the recycled denim fibers with a “bio-based resin” that turns the loose fiber scraps into a hard but flexible composite through a unique seven-step process. The hangtags that will be used for AFGI products, in particular, are also made to look like indigo marble—although Denimite is most recognized for its dark black composites made from recycled black denim jeans.

The result is a hangtag that AFGI says “evokes a sense of intrigue” and that cannot be recognized as a recycled denim fiber product without an up-close inspection. AFGI and Denimite hope the project will inspire designers to look at the recycling of garment fibers in a new way, perhaps creating new products that increase the long-term sustainability of denim along the way.

AFGI’s Pakistan mill is a LEED Gold Certificate facility and the company has 16 factories worldwide, including offices in Pakistan, Spain and the U.S. The company says the collaboration with Denimite is an important part of its “Vision 2020” initiative, which guides its investment in renewable energy and the reuse of production waste.

Denimite is an organization entirely devoted to recycling denim fabrics into its “Denimite” material. The company previously collaborated with H&M to create its “Conscious Exclusive Collection” in 2015, which incorporated Denimite and recycled glass, among other materials. Denimite says a single square foot of its material takes an entire pair of jeans to produce, though it creates very little waste, due to the bio-based resin.