October 5, 2023

Cone Denim Achieves Bronze Status through Indigood Program from Kontoor Brands

Cone Denim® has received the Bronze Status through Kontoor Brands Indigood® Program for freshwater savings.


Cone Denim® has received the Bronze Status through Kontoor Brands Indigood® Program for freshwater savings. With this milestone, Cone Denim is the first textile mill in North America to be awarded the performance status of Bronze or better from the Indigood Program. The honor highlights Cone’s commitment to freshwater conservation.


“This achievement is a tremendous honor for the Cone Denim team and reflects the hard work our employees have put into reaching this milestone,” said Cone Denim President Steve Maggard. “The Indigood Program means a lot to Cone Denim and recognizes an achievement for our employees who work each day toward meeting our sustainability goals.”


The Indigood Program is an initiative by Kontoor that highlights supply chain partners who are actively working to improve their freshwater footprint. Mills participating in the Indigood Program are third-party verified with Cone Denim receiving Kontoor Freshwater Savings – Bronze Status for water-savings achieved during a 2022-2023 timeline compared to a 2018 baseline.


“At Kontoor, we are focused on reducing the apparel industry’s reliance on freshwater, but it is not a challenge we can solve alone,” said Dhruv Agarwal, VP, Sustainability, Innovation, & Development, Kontoor Brands. “Through the Indigood Program, we are identifying, highlighting, and prioritizing the denim manufacturing facilities that are actively working to improve their freshwater footprint meeting the Indigood Program standards. We want to congratulate Cone Denim on their Bronze status under the Indigood Program and for committing to driving change in the industry.”


Cone Denim’s 2025 sustainability goals include a target to reduce water consumption by 25%. The company is on pace to meet this goal with 21.8% reported water savings at the end of 2022, which has been largely led by its Zero Liquid Discharge effluent treatment system at Cone Denim’s Parras, Mexico mill. Installed in 2021, this state-of-the-art technology plays a key role in reducing the mill’s total water footprint by saving up to 100 million gallons of water a year. The verification process included data from both 2022 and 2023.


The mill uses a customized ultrafiltration and reverse osmosis system to recycle the wastewater and treat 11,000 gallons per hour. The recovered water is recycled back into the denim manufacturing process, eliminating wastewater being discharged into the environment. Over one-third of Cone Denim’s global denim fabric production is made using recycled water from this system.


Cone Denim continues to make significant investments in new technologies and advanced processes that lessen the environmental impact of its denim manufacturing operations. From sustainable finishing technologies to additional metering to measure water conservation efforts at its mills, Cone Denim is focused on a sustainable future.


“We cannot realize a sustainable future alone, nor can any company or denim brand,” added Maggard. “Working collaboratively with customers like Kontoor on initiatives that achieve sustainability at scale is truly exciting. This is where we have the greatest opportunity to move the needle on sustainability and make true progress.”

The Indigood Program means a lot to Cone Denim and recognizes an achievement for our employees who work each day toward meeting our sustainability goals.

Steve Maggard, President Cone Denim

About Cone Denim

A leading denim innovator for more than 130 years, Cone Denim® delivers unparalleled expertise and advanced denim capabilities that service and inspire the global market. Cone promotes sustainable practices through its Sustainblue™ denim fabrics representing the highest standards in responsible manufacturing and Cone’s commitment to making a positive impact in its communities. From performance denims and superior S GENE® technology to vintage re-creations of Cone Deeptone Denim™ reaching back to the early 1900s, Cone offers unique collections of Performance, Stretch, Selvage, and Distilled Indigo™ denims crafted out of the Cone®3D R&D incubator. Cone Denim operates as part of Elevate Textiles, Inc., with manufacturing capabilities in Mexico and China and a global network of sales, product, and merchandising professionals based out of Greensboro, N.C., New York, Los Angeles, and Hong Kong. To learn more, visit us at conedenim.com, LinkedIn, Instagram, and Facebook or elevatetextiles.com.


About Kontoor Brands

Kontoor Brands, Inc. (NYSE: KTB) is a global lifestyle apparel company, with a portfolio led by two of the world’s most iconic consumer brands: Wrangler® and Lee®. Kontoor designs, manufactures, distributes, and licenses superior high-quality products that look good and fit right, giving people around the world the freedom and confidence to express themselves. Kontoor Brands is a purpose-led organization focused on leveraging its global platform, strategic sourcing model and best-in-class supply chain to drive brand growth and deliver long-term value for its stakeholders. For more information about Kontoor Brands, please visit www.KontoorBrands.com.



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