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20 / 09 / 2019
Give viscose a second chance – Reinvigorating its value as clean and responsibly produced fibers for apparels
20 / 09 / 2019
Give viscose a second chance – Reinvigorating its value as clean and responsibly produced fibers for apparels

Since being labelled as one of the worst polluters, the fashion industry is eager to find ways to change. 'Sustainability' has undoubtedly become one of the hottest fashion buzzwords, with more brands now launching eco-initiatives or eco-collections, hoping to make a difference in safeguarding the environment.

Viscose, also known as “rayon” or “artificial silk”, has risen as a popular sustainable alternative to cotton and polyester for the textile industry. As a fiber that originate from plants, viscose is not inherently toxic or polluting. Nevertheless, the need to manufacture huge amounts of low-cost viscose leaves many on the market today produced with little to no environmental awareness. Without proper treatment, the discharge of pollutants into the air and chemicals into waterways can disrupt ecosystems and cause severe health hazards to local communities.

Beholding current limitations in viscose production, Lenzing ventured to offer eco-conscious and clean possibilities for the viscose market. LENZING™ ECOVERO™ branded fibers is strictly made according to the guidelines of the EU Ecolabel, meeting high environmental standards across the production process. Compared to conventional viscose, the production of LENZING™ ECOVERO™ branded fibers involves half the water and fossil energy usage, while generating half the emissions at the same time.

With the arrival of the clean viscose option, brands are seeking renewed value in the sustainability market through upgrading conventional viscose products with responsibly produced sources. One of Lenzing’s brand partners, Japanese brand - Earth, Music & Ecology, agreed that switching to clean viscose fibers allows the company to source ethically, which aligns with its sustainability cooperate strategy and will also responsibly implement sustainable development goals.

Another feature of LENZING™ ECOVERO™ branded fibers lies on its fiber identification technology, which improves the transparency level of the supply chain. Lenzing believes a small step in yielding the right to know for eco-conscious consumers, is equivalent to a big step for the fashion industry in putting supply chain transparency into practice. Even after long textile processing and conversion steps, brands can still trace and identify the LENZING™ ECOVERO™ Viscose fibers in a piece of clothing, tracking down the fiber source and production identifications. Consumer can be sure that LENZING™ ECOVERO™ branded products are made from eco-friendly materials.

German brand Armedangles is among the many brands that had previously kept an eye on viscose but hesitated because there is no way for them monitor the sourcing and production of the material. When LENZING™ ECOVERO™ branded fibers was launched, the brand expanded its partnership with Lenzing from TENCEL™ branded fibers to the new type of clean viscose. This year, around 100 styles containing Lenzing’s clean viscose fibers can be spotted in their online shop across Europe. The traceability feature of LENZING™ ECOVERO™ Viscose fibers provides an extra layer of confidence for brands looking to switch to quality sustainable fibers, while keeping the costs at bay.

On top of other international fashion houses such as Bestseller, Esprit, Max Fashion and Global Work, department stores such as JC Penny and Marks & Spencer are also among the many companies that hopped onto the trend of using clean viscose. This is an encouraging step towards a more transparent supply chain for the industry, and new-found opportunity for consumers to make ethical clothing purchases.