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Cone Denim Parent Elevate Textiles Reveals Progress on Sustainably Sourced Fibers

Rivet's 2020 Denim Circularity report takes a deep dive into how the global denim industry is plotting its circular future amidst a worldwide pandemic.

Elevate Textiles, a global provider of advanced textile solutions through its American & Efird (A&E), Burlington, Cone Denim, Gütermann and Safety Components brands, issued its 2020 Sustainability Report, outlining progress toward its 2025 sustainability goals focused on sustainably sourced fibers, reduced water consumption and reduction in greenhouse gases.

As Elevate’s first annual Communication on Progress for the United Nations Global Compact and CEO Water Mandate, the report also shares the company’s performance against goals outlined within its environmental program, the Ten Threads of Sustainability. The 10 threads are global carbon footprint, water stewardship, energy conservation, sustainable packaging, recycling and waste reduction, sustainable products, supply chain sustainability, product stewardship, education and involvement, and global environment, health and safety, social responsibility and compliance.

“Our brands share a long-standing commitment to sustainability and a drive to accelerate our efforts to new heights,” Sim Skinner, president and CEO of Elevate Textiles, said. “Elevate teams around the globe work every day to create and distribute premium, ethically and sustainably sourced products through excellence in innovation and responsible manufacturing practices. We are pleased to present Elevate’s first Sustainability Report and look forward to sharing our continued progress in our journey to lead meaningful change.”

Key progress and achievements outlined in the report include a 7 percent reduction of absolute greenhouse gas from 2016 to 2019, meeting the corporate goal of 2.5 percent per year reduction, and a 5 percent reduction of absolute global water consumption since 2016. In addition, the company increased water recycling 65 percent since 2016 by implementing new wastewater technologies and achieved 52 percent sustainably sourced cotton against its goal of 80 percent sustainably sourced cotton by 2025, as well as 50 percent recycled polyester content.

In the area of recycling and waste reduction, post-industrial cotton waste is recycled and reused in new production at Cone Denim. The company is also partnering with cut and sew customers to recycle cutting table scraps and is committed to reducing the amount of byproducts created by its operations, reusing as much of them as possible and recycling the rest, according to the report.

Elevate is converting products that contain virgin material into products that contain recycled fibers and increasing the usage of fibers that allow reduced processing and lower water and chemical use. Elevate Textiles sustainable products include Burlington Restora, Safety Components PF Zero Finish, Cone Denim Sustainblue, A&E Eco 100 and Gütermann rPET.

“As part of Elevate’s dedication, we are actively engaged with our customers and suppliers to positively impact the people and natural environments associated with our operations and supply chain,” chief sustainability officer Jimmy Summers said. “It is through the efforts of our 15,000 employees around the world that we are able to make continued progress and we are proud to highlight the work they do each day on the frontlines of sustainability. We pledge to continue to be a good corporate citizen and one in which our customers and employees can be proud.”

Summers said the company is committed to the principles of the UN Global Compact and the Sustainable Development Goals, and to contributing toward many other efforts, including the ZDHC Program.

With a global array of premium fabric and thread solutions focused on innovation, sustainability and quality craftsmanship, Elevate and its portfolio brands provide products across yndustries, including fashion and functional apparel, footwear, military, fire, medical, athletic, automotive, aerospace and outdoor.

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