MUD Jeans proves that circular entrepreneurship is the future
Doubling revenue in challenging times shows momentum for circular jeans.
The Netherlands, – The demand for circular jeans is increasing. This positive movement is in line with the goals set by the Paris Climate Agreement. The Netherlands aims to be fully circular by 2050. Currently, only 1 percent of clothing worldwide is recycled into new clothing. MUD Jeans takes it's responsibility seriously and turns old jeans into new jeans.
“When it comes to sustainability and recycling, there is still a lot to gain in the fashion industry. We made that turnaround to circular entrepreneurship almost 10 years ago, at the start of our company. When a customer purchases, they commit to returning the jeans when they are worn out by signing the return agreement. You always have to keep innovating and that is why we are introducing a post- corona store formula”, says CEO Bert van Son.
To really change the economy, it is necessary to promote other ways of consumption. Every year we throw away 305 million kilos of clothing in the Netherlands. The lease system of MUD Jeans, in which the user pays a monthly fee for their jeans, promotes conscious shopping decisions. This is a great option for customers aiming to shop more sustainably. When leasing, MUD Jeans remains the owner of the raw material, after 12 months or longer, the jeans are returned to MUD Jeans, to be recycled or sold as vintage.
In the old textile city of Enschede, new techniques are being developped to increase the percentage of post-consumer recycled cotton. Currently, MUD Jeans makes jeans that already consist of 40% post-consumer recycled cotton. In other words, there is about half an old pair of jeans in a new pair. The goal is to have jeans made from 100% recycled denim yarn by the end of the year, using a new technique.
Covid as accelerator for sustainable shopping
Worldwide research by management consultancy Accenture predicts that the pandemic will structurally change consumer behavior. In global research, 60% of consumers say they have made more environmentally friendly, sustainable or ethically responsible purchases since the start of the pandemic. Nine out of ten indicate that they will probably continue to do so.
“It is the most polluting product if produced in the old-fashioned way, but also the most worn item, after all, everyone owns a pair of jeans. There is a lot to be gained. We can do better at every step in the production and that’s exactly what we do” says van Son. For the 2 billion jeans sold annually, an average of 8,000 liters of water is used for every conventional pair of jeans. With MUD Jeans, the water consumption is 92% less due to recycled and organic cotton, as well as innovative washing techniques.
Introducing In Store Lease
It has been a difficult time for retailers. MUD Jeans is therefore working on the execution of a new concept to support the stores financially as soon as they open. “Lease A Jeans has been available in our online store until now and will soon be available in stores. The retailer will be able to offer all models of MUD Jeans without having to have everything in stock, with the jeans being sent straight to the customers. This new lease formula for selected retailers will ensure that they can get up to speed quickly”, promises van Son. That is the power of circular business, according to van Son.
About MUD Jeans
MUD Jeans is the first circular jeans brand in the world. In 2012 MUD Jeans introduced the innovative Lease A Jeans concept. This idea is about the shift from an economy based on ownership to access. The brand applies the principles of the circular economy and recycles all their jeans. Currently, MUD Jeans uses up to 40 percent recycled cotton for its jeans production. MUD Jeans has been named Sustainable Retailer Of The Year 2020-2021 by ABN AMRO and is one of the 5 highest scoring B Corps in the Benelux.