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Lenzing – Lenzing Group, a leading global producer of wood-based specialty fibers, and Kaihara, the world-renowned Japanese denim manufacturer, elevate three decades of partnership towards new milestones. Leveraging the versatile applications of TENCEL™ branded fibers, the latest collaboration is set to propel Kaihara’s time-tested craftsmanship to the international markets as part of its overseas expansion strategy. The collaborative innovation will debut at the “Kaihara x TENCEL™ Denim Week” in Tokyo, Japan, October 16–21, 2023.
Honoring craftsmanship through fiber and fabric innovation
Since TENCEL™ fibers were first introduced to the Japanese market in 1994, Kaihara has masterfully woven these fibers into their commercial collections. Together with TENCEL™’s excellence in fiber performance and responsible fiber production, Kaihara transcends the traditional boundaries of denim fabric manufacturing with innovative designs, authentic aesthetics and diverse functionality. As premium denim fashion continues to evolve, Lenzing and Kaihara embark on the next chapter of their progressive partnership – developing new fabrics with TENCEL™ fibers that cater to the demand of brand partners and consumers worldwide, capitalizing on the new frontiers of shared success.
“Kaihara is a well-respected and long-standing mill partner along our journey of denim fabric innovation,” said Dennis Hui, Global Business Development Manager, Denim at Lenzing. “The adoption of botanic and biodegradable materials like TENCEL™ fibers in denim fabrics allows innovative creators like Kaihara to expand into new application categories traditionally dominated by synthetics while enabling their brand customers to achieve their sustainability goals. We share a commitment to excellence and a vision for creativity, offering brands and consumers worldwide limitless design possibilities through the versatile applications of TENCEL™ fibers. We are excited to continue our close partnership towards the future of global denim fashion.”
HIROFUMI Inagaki, Executive Officer, General Manager of Sales Department at Kaihara, said, “Consumer demand for premium, sustainable fashion is stronger than ever globally. As we broaden our international reach, our long-standing partnership with Lenzing will prove pivotal to advancing our commitment to responsible practices, such as incorporating water-saving TENCEL™ Modal fiber with Indigo Color technology. To tailor specifically for luxury and high-end segments seeking superior quality and kindness to the planet, we have also been crafting denim fabrics with zero or reduced cotton leveraging TENCEL™ fibers for their sustainability, softness and performance benefits. We are confident that our strengthened, multidisciplinary collaboration with Lenzing will distinctively position Kaihara as a world-leading company in developing boundary-pushing innovations addressing diverse tastes and needs while preserving denim as a time-tested trend, whether in our Japanese home market or abroad.”
Denim fabrics made with TENCEL™ branded fibers enable a versatile design with an authentic look and feel, creating soft and comfortable textures for the finished product that also comes with the inherent benefits of enhanced breathability and color retention. Such versatility caters to the different needs of global brands and consumers who seek variety in aesthetics, performance and functionalities. Incorporating TENCEL™ branded fibers also helps mills and brands that constantly seek ways to scale up their use of wood-based materials to meet their sustainability goals.
Envisioning the future of premium denim fashion
Lenzing and Kaihara will be unveiling a specially curated capsule collection of seven new denim fabrics using Jeanologia’s finishing technology, embodying the myriad possibilities brought to life by TENCEL™ Lyocell and Modal fibers in high-end, high-quality denim applications. As an extension of the Tokyo showcase, this curation will take center stage at the Lenzing booth during Kingpins Hong Kong on November 6–7, 2023.
Images related to the announcement can be downloaded here.
 Compared to generic (unbranded) lyocell and modal. The results were calculated according to LCA standards (ISO 14040/44) and are made available via the Higg Materials Sustainability Index (MSI) by the Sustainable Apparel Coalition (Version 3.6)
 A range of TENCEL™ fibers are certified by TÜV Austria as biodegradable in soil, freshwater and marine environments, and compostable under home and industrial conditions.
 Compared to three conventional denim dyeing methods