On October 20th, 2022, we took a group of premium denim brands on a field trip to experience first-hand the benefits of regenerative organic agriculture and circular fashion. The Road to Denim aimed to present our first fully circular scientific experiment, conducted by the Rodale Institute at its campus in California at the McGrath Family Farm. Here we collected some of the most important moments:
Candiani Denim and the Rodale Institute test COREVA™ stretch technology
The Rodale Institute California Organic Center in Camarillo is the leading Californian center for regenerative organic agriculture and supports farmers in their transition to regenerative and organic practices.
Candiani Denim has partnered with the Rodale Institute to test COREVA™, the world’s first 100% bio-based and compostable stretch technology, in an actual agricultural setting. The goal is to study the effect of COREVA™ on soil health and plants' growth and evaluate its impact on the environment. Regenerative and organic agriculture is becoming increasingly popular in the fashion industry for its numerous benefits. It can restore soil health, preserve biodiversity, and address climate change.
Stretch denim makes up about 80% of the current market, making elastane nearly as common as cotton. COREVA™, patented by Candiani Denim, replaces these synthetic fibers made from fossil fuels, which take hundreds of years to decompose and release polluting microplastics, with natural rubber. Organic cotton wraps around this natural material core and builds a fabric that is completely plastic-free, offering a circular solution at the jeans’ end of life without affecting their quality, aesthetics, and durability.
The testing involves our exclusive Blue Seed hybrid cotton with circularity in mind
The testing also involved Blue Seed, provided to the Rodale Institute to be fertilized using COREVA™. Blue Seed is a hybrid cotton variety co-engineered by Candiani Denim and Gowan. It is distinguished by silky, strong, and longer high-quality fibers offering a lint yield 20-30% greater than similar types of cotton.
We want to prove that our vision of linking industrial denim production with agriculture and circularity is possible. Circularity is an approach to product design and production which begins with the “end in mind”. It prioritizes bio-based materials with no toxic substances, waste reduction, durability, recycling, and upcycling. It aims to have a positive and regenerating impact on people and the planet.
Candiani Denim sees circularity as a regenerative model in which raw materials become fabric, then garment, and, instead of being thrown away, they can be used in different life cycles; at the very end, they can come back to nature thanks to biodegradability and compostability, offering a solution with a positive environmental impact.
“We must look for renewable resources and biodegradable and compostable materials”
“In a world where resources are diminishing, and landfills are overflowing with discarded garments, we must look for renewable resources, in addition to biodegradable and compostable materials”, said Alberto Candiani, President of Candiani Denim. “Denim has to take the lead in this revolution. We are thrilled to be working alongside Denham the Jeanmaker and Stella McCartney and brands including Hiut, Kings of Indigo, Closed, and Heron Preston to share our innovation with the wider fashion industry”.