It takes 3 years of drinking water to make a cotton T-shirt. Recognizing the need for more sustainable processes in the fashion industry, The Dow Chemical Co., Midland, MI/USA, and research company Cotton Inc., Cary, NC/USA, joined forces. Cotton Inc.’s industry expertise combined with Dow’s material science knowledge were used to validate the benefits of Dow’s patented Ecofast Pure Sustainable Textile Treatment.
A large amount of water is used in the dyeing process – up to 5 trillion l/year. Significant amounts of chemicals and dye are also needed. Wastewater from the dyeing process can be polluting and require costly treatment and these challenges are found in regions that already face water scarcity. Ecofast Pure is a pre-treatment which decreases the amount of water, chemicals, dye and energy needed to color cotton. This means the charge of cotton is permanently changed from negative to positive, so it acts like a magnet to attract negatively charged dye to the material.