It’s time for another Kind Style Saturday and today I would like to review Levi’s. This brand is so extremely known and popular, I think I don’t even need to introduce the brand. I guess most of us own a Levi’s jeans, a trucker jacket, a checked shirt, a cap or a tee. The Levi’s brand is well known for it’s good quality and therefore is a major treasure in vintage. I love that about Levi’s – it’s one of the few brands that creates extra value when you wear it vintage. There are multiples businesses active that update vintage Levi’s 501’s into the best customized denim there is. Their own project with RE/DONE is called Authorized Vintage.
But, with its’ best sold jeans, Levi’s 501, worldwide, what does the brand Levi’s do with kindness? You’ll find the answer here:
Sustainable production: Kind for Nature
Levi’s takes responsibility for it’s production of new garments and the impact of the production to our natural habitat. In 2010 Levi’s started the ‘Better Cotton‘ initiative in which they teach farmers and control production of environmental friendly productions. A reduction of pesticides, using less water and avoiding fertilizers. At the moment, 20% of their products is made out of ‘Better Cotton.’ Next to their ‘Better Cotton’ initiative they introduced the ‘Screened Chemistry‘ program in which all chemicals used for the production were screened, tested and approved. Currently Levi’s works with over 20 production companies who signed the ‘Screened Chemistry’ program in order to eliminate dangerous chemicals and use only chemicals that do little to no harm to our environment, animals and society. For their down products such as jackets and bodies, they promise to only use down with a certified ‘Responsible Down Standard.‘ The use of down with this certification means the feathers in their products only come from animals that are not plucked or have been having forced feeding. Next to these programs, Levi’s implemented several initiatives to reduce the waste of water. They implemented 20 technical ways to reduce the use of water into their production process which made it possible to reduce 1.8 billion gallon of water and 129 million gallon of water is currently re-used and recycled in their production system.
Supporting society: Kind for eachother
Levi’s introduced the ‘Working well’ program for the employees working in their own company and production factories. This way, they support 200.000 employees with better working conditions, development and finances. 80% of the Levi’s products is made in a production company which implemented the ‘Working Well’ program. Employees of Levi’s HQ get the change to visit a ‘Working Well’ factory and volunteer locally to provide better circumstances in the community working for Levi’s.
Levi’s is a pride fighter for equality and especially for the LGBTQ-community. Therefore Levi’s designs and develops a yearly ‘Pride Collection‘ of which a part of thr sales profits are donated to the Harvey Milk Foundation en de Stonewall Foundation – both striving for equality.
Levi’s supports the yearly ‘Community Day‘ which means a big part of the employees gets a day paid to do voluntary work. In a day, Levi’s is able to donate 16.000 hours of voluntary work with its enormous team worldwide. Employees are supported to give a monthly five-hours on voluntary work.
Review & opinion:
Levi’s is worldwide the best known denim company and therefore a big player when it comes to pollution from the fashion industry. Their ways of caring for nature and environment are good initiatives, covering different topics. Nevertheless, I think the percentages of ‘Better Cotton’ are still pretty low and Better Cotton isn’t necessary biological or recycled cotton. Same goes for down in my opinion: what they do is a step in the right direction but an alternative for animal-feathers would definitely make a bigger change in the industry. Their reduction of chemicals and reducing the use of water is very good and also very important, as the production of denim is the worst in fashion. Therefore in my opinion, there are still big steps to make and improvements to make.
Their social initiatives also cover more than one topic which I really like, but still the changes are not very concrete and small in my opinion. None of the social initiatives shows a concrete number or value which has been added to supply a better world. The ‘Working Well’ program is a codicil which is hard to check – in my opinion a worldwide known certification would be better. The Pride Collection is partly donated and that is a good initiative, but also a commercial marketing strategy to level up sales during the pride (the way I see it). I would have expected Levi’s – being a company this big – to have it’s own Foundation or dedicated partnership with a well known Foundation. I am a proud owner of vintage Levi’s but their kindness does not convince me to shop for a new product. Hopefully Levi’s will improve it’s kindness program and decrease it’s ecological footprint in more ways!