Blog: Michelle Russell'Ten years, ten days, ten homes' denim recycling

Michelle Russell | 30 April 2015

The Cotton Incorporated Blue Jeans Go Green denim recycling programme has joined forces with singer-songwriter Sheryl Crow to call on consumers to recycle their unwanted denim to help rebuild New Orleans, an area still feeling the repercussions of Hurricanes Katrina and Rita.

Blue Jeans Go Green has set a collection goal of 10,000 pieces of denim, which will be turned into UltraTouch Denim Insulation and subsequently provided to a ten-home Build-A-Thon being conducted by New Orleans Area Habitat for Humanity set for 20-30 May.

Over the past 40 years, US cotton growers have reduced pesticide applications by 50%, reduced irrigation water applications by 40%, and have grown twice as much cotton on 30% less acreage. Crow, who was born and raised in the Cotton Belt state of Missouri, is supporting the Blue Jeans Go Green initiative, which brings the environmental gains cotton growers have made in the field full-circle by diverting textiles from landfills and helping to rebuild communities.

Since 2006, the programme has diverted more than one million pieces of denim - roughly 600 tons - from landfills, and created around 2m square feet of insulation for communities in need.

"The average consumer owns seven pairs of jeans," says Andrea Samber, co-director of Strategic Alliances at Cotton Incorporated. "Giving just one of them to the recycling drive can make a big difference in a family's life."

Information on where to recycle denim through Blue Jeans Go Green can be found at www.bluejeansgogreen.org.

Click here to read more about the global denim industry, from innovation to technology and sustainability.

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