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Report | March 2017

Lenzing is No. 1 for sustainable wood sourcing

The combination of high wood and pulp procurement standards with best practice process technologies reflects the sustainability leadership of the Lenzing Group.

The Lenzing Group was rated No. 1 globally

with respect to the procurement of wood, the key raw material in cellulose fibre production. This was the conclusion of the latest global ranking compiled by the Canadian non-profit environmental organisation Canopy Planet Society, who cooperates with 68 leading retail brands in the textile industry worldwide and is a driver in evaluating sustainable sourcing processes.

Achieving the leading position in this ranking is another major recognition of Lenzing’s sustainability leadership that is documented by numerous prizes, labels and certifications. In its report, Canopy assessed the performance on forest conservation and wood sourcing practices of the major players of cellulose fibre industry. It also commended Lenzing for its new TENCEL® fibre, which uses cotton fabric waste as an alternative source of raw material.

“We are proud of this ranking, and see it as further evidence of the leadership role played by the Lenzing Group in the field of sustainability. The origin of the wood, the most important material, is the decisive factor for us at the beginning of the production process”, says Robert van de Kerkhof, Chief Commercial Officer (CCO) of Lenzing Group, in commenting on the ranking. “Lenzing is continually striving to improve all its processes as well as its procurement guidelines. It will also continue to intensively provide support to the roadmap specified by Canopy as a means of preserving and protecting global forests. This is because sustainability is a core element of our business model”, he adds.

Lenzing has been focusing on optimising the sourcing of the renewable raw material wood for more than 20 years in accordance with the principle of sustainability. The company mainly relies on the Forest Stewardship Council® (FSC®) certification system whenever possible. In Europe with its strict forest regulations, Lenzing also makes use of the PEFC™ programme as a means of demonstrating its sustainable procurement activities. Close to 100 per cent of the wood and pulp used by the Lenzing Group is already certified by FSC® or PEFC™ or is controlled in line with these standards.

The combination of high wood and pulp procurement standards with best practice process technologies reflects the sustainability leadership of the Lenzing Group. Both the production of Lenzing Viscose® fibres and the wide range of specialties, such as the TENCEL® fibre and Lenzing Modal®, are produced using high environmental standards and highly resource-efficient closed loop processes.

Lenzing has been working steadily on the further improvement and environmental responsibility of its production processes. In this regard, Lenzing relies on the principle of closed loop production as well as the complete use of the raw material wood in its ‘biorefinery’. R&D expenditures of the Lenzing Group, which are already significantly higher than the industry average, were further increased in the current 2016 financial year to enable the company to press ahead with the development of new, ecologically-driven technologies.

Lenzing is also a leader in alternative raw materials thanks to the new TENCEL® fiber from recycled cotton waste. Another criterion serving as the basis for Lenzing’s No. 1 global ranking was its performance in the field of alternative raw material sources. Lenzing once again demonstrated its leadership in sustainable fibre industry innovations by developing the new TENCEL® fibre on basis of cotton fabric waste. This groundbreaking innovation links pioneering work in textile recycling with the environmental award-winning closed loop fiber technology of TENCEL®.

With this innovation, Lenzing underpins its core value sustainabilty as a key business driver. It paves the way to solutions for the textile industry’s pressing issue of more than 150 billion garments produced and partly disposed of every year.

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