Creating sustainable t-shirts with the help of a little magic, ‘Blue magic’

REWE Group is one of the largest retail and tourism groups in Europe, with 15,000 stores across 20 countries. As part of a larger push towards sustainability, it recently became a signatory to the Greenpeace Detox campaign, which has identified eleven hazardous chemicals that need to be phased out from fashion by 2020.

To accomplish this, the sourcing organization for REWE Group in Asia, REWE Far East, approached Archroma to transform and streamline its white knit fabric t-shirt production. The challenge was to maintain the same quality of whites while reducing resource use (power, water, steam, time) and meeting requirements.

Challenge accepted!

Enters Archroma’s ‘Blue Magic’ for bright whites

The team introduced REWE Group to Archroma’s signature Blue Magic process. Based on an all-in-one bleaching auxiliary Imerol® BLUE liquid, the concept generates both economic and ecological advantages. Besides its advanced brightening effect, Blue Magic adds up to higher productivity, simplified handling, better uniformity and improved dye-ability, with less impact on the environment.

Shorter Process = Reduced Resources

Diagram 1: Textile mill’s current process
Diagram 2: Archroma Signature one bath pretreatment and OBA

The Archroma team worked in the lab to establish the Blue Magic process and run both the conventional mill benchmark and the Blue Magic process. We were thus able to accurately check ONE WAY’s digital analysis and confirm the significant savings calculated. The results pointed to a 40% reduction in water use, 27% reduction in time, 30% reduction in energy use, and 34% reduction in CO₂ emissions. We also replicated the process in bulk trials with similar results. Whiteness and other quality parameters still met the requirements of both the mill and REWE Group.

One Way Score Card

Using the ONE WAY process simulator,  the team showed how, with the Blue magic concept, REWE Group could achieve more sustainable production with low compliance costs.

Benchmark process vs. Archroma Blue Magic process using Imerol® BLUE liquid

 

Drain water test results satisfied REWE Group’s MRSL requirements and were superior to test results in REWE Group’s existing process reports, which showed issues with APEO/NPEO and heavy metals. REWE Group and the mill were thrilled with the project results.

Taking a strong stand in favor of more sustainability in textile processing can come hand in hand with technical and commercial benefits. Click To Tweet

The team made further presentations to REWE Group on the sustainability improvements. As a result of the project’s success, REWE Group invited the team to present the findings as a case study to their key suppliers in a Shanghai REWE Group vendor meeting.

“REWE Group is demonstrating that, with the support of Archroma and our commitment to sustainability and customer focus, taking a strong stand in favor of more sustainability in textile processing can come hand in hand with technical and commercial benefits, “ comments Navneet Krishnan, responsible for Brand Marketing, South Asia, at Archroma’s Brand & Performance Textile Specialties business.

Navneet Krishnan

Navneet Krishnan works at Archroma as a Brand Marketing Manager – South Asia. In the current role he is actively involved in collaborating with textile brands and textile customers, working with them to introduce sustainable innovations and concepts from Archroma to reach the end consumer thereby creating value to all stakeholders. He is a chemical technologist, specialised in textile chemical processing and has studied executive management at the Indo-german chamber of commerce in Mumbai. He has 16 years of experience with the textile industry working across different facets from production, turn key project consultant, organisational strategic projects, sales & marketing of dyes, specialty chemicals and state-of-art textile technologies (capital equipment), as well as pricing & margin management and brand marketing.

Comment (1)

  1. Excellent article and so relevent for the current business scenario. I am interested to explore further for our products. Would like to hear and see if any bulk case study is available. Also like to understand the availability and cost perspective if we replace the usual method.

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