Levi’s Moves Forward with Plant-Based Dyes and Pigments, Organic & Transitional Cotton in the 2023 Spring/Summer WellThread® Capsule.Written by Ulrika Lindqvist
For decades, Levi’s has been a proud leader of sustainability efforts in fashion. Nowhere is that more apparent than
with Levi’s WellThread®, which leverages more sustainable design innovation that may reduce the adverse impact
of apparel production. From fibers and dyeing to garment finishing, water and resources are conserved at every step
during the manufacturing process. All WellThread® fabrics and garments are made in facilities that recycle their water,
and our wash formulas are developed to reduce their chemical, energy, and water impact. With longer term and
scalable changes in mind, WellThread® puts research and innovation at the forefront of its work.
Levi's WellThread® uses BioBlack TX by Nature Coatings in its prints, a plant-based pigment from wood waste.
This black pigment comes from FSC® certified sources and serves as a replacement for petroleum-derived carbon
black, which relies on the combustion of fossil fuels. BioBlack TX is produced through a closed-loop manufacturing
system, and it’s 100% bio-based. The pigment comes from upcycled wood waste that otherwise would be burned or
landfilled. Plant-based indigo dyes as well as organic and transitional cotton remain a centerpiece of this season’s
WellThread® capsule while adding plant-based black pigment to its portfolio.
After launching the Levi’s® WellThread® Transitional Cotton program in 2020, Levi’s has continued to work with small
shareholder farmers in India as they transition their fields to a production system that sustains the health of soils,
ecosystems, and people by relying on ecological processes, biodiversity and farming cycles adapted to local
conditions. The brand is supporting these farmers during this transition by committing to the purchase of their
transitional cotton crop - reducing their financial risk during the transition period to organic farming.
These breakthroughs have been implemented in the ‘23 Spring/Summer Levi’s WellThread capsule, styled for
longevity. For women, the assortment includes the Baggy Dad, a loose and relaxed fitting pair of jeans, and the iconic
Type II Trucker, a boxy silhouette with denim covered snaps. New additions include the 80s Mom Shorts and a slim
denim shirt with denim-covered snaps. Men’s fits for the assortment include the 551Z and 502 in denim, the Loose
Chino Crop in printed denim, and the Vintage Trucker with organic cotton and plant-based dyes. With Levi’s
WellThread®, everyone can wear their values with tried and true iconic styles that will stand the test of time.
“Our goal is to develop more sustainable methods to make high-quality, beautiful clothing that will endure both
emotionally and physically,” said Paul Dillinger, Vice President, Head of Global Product Innovation at Levi Strauss &
Co. “Through WellThread®, Levi’s has demonstrated a firm commitment to supporting research efforts for new
processes and resources to be scaled and shared with the world. Collaboration is a key element in all of our work
and we’re grateful to all of the farmers, designers, and material scientists who contributed to the breakthroughs that
will help protect our planet.”