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2016-03-23 13:05
Levi Strauss & Co. Open Sources Water Innovation Techniques to Public
  • Company also announces 2020 water savings targets and White House Summit commitment
SAN FRANCISCO--(Business Wire/Korea Newswire) March 23, 2016 -- In recognition of World Water Day, Levis Strauss & Co. (LS&Co.) today announced it is making its innovative Water<Less™ finishing techniques available to the public in an effort to encourage water conservation and create impactful change across the apparel industry.

The techniques were introduced by the company’s designers in 2011 and reduce the water used in garment finishing by up to 96 percent. Since implementation, Water<Less™ techniques have helped the company save more than 1 billion liters of water.

In addition to sharing its Water<Less™ techniques, LS&Co. today announced its participation in the White House Water Summit, where the company communicated its goal to train 100 percent of corporate employees on water conservation through its ongoing partnership with Project WET, a non-profit that offers water education to help people understand and value water and ensure a sustainable future.

“Water is a critical resource for our business, the planet and people around the globe, but usable supply is becoming increasingly scarce,” said Michael Kobori, vice president of sustainability at LS&Co. “We’ve long been committed to being water stewards, but realize more needs to be done. We’re setting competition aside and encouraging others to utilize these open source tools.”

LS&Co. is sharing 21 water-saving techniques with a range of applications for denim finishing, including ozone and wash cycle combinations. These techniques were previewed with nearly 20 of LS&Co.’s industry peers last year in an effort to drive collaboration towards greater impact as an industry. Today, by open sourcing its full range of Water<Less™ techniques with the broader public, LS&Co. is encouraging all apparel companies - large and small - to accelerate their own innovation and engage in an open dialogue around water use in the apparel industry.

Kobori continued, “We believe that water is too important to our industry to not share these techniques. We hope that our peers will take what we have learned and build upon it so that, as an industry, we can work together to save 50 billion liters of water by 2020.”

Today LS&Co. also shared its 2020 water savings targets across three key areas—the planet, production and people. They include:

· Use 100 percent sustainable cotton through sources such as Better Cotton and recycled cotton, significantly reducing our total water footprint.

· 80 percent of all LS&Co. products will be made with Water<Less™ techniques.

· Achieve zero discharge of hazardous chemicals through our participation in the Joint Roadmap Towards Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals (ZDHC).

· As announced today by the White House, 100 percent of LS&Co. corporate employees will complete Project WET water education training.

LS&Co. has been a leading driver of change around water use in the apparel industry for more than 20 years. It has also been vocal in raising awareness about the role consumers play. In 2007 and again in 2015 the company conducted the industry’s first lifecycle assessment to understand the water impact of its core products. The findings resulted in the creation of the company’s Care Tag for the Planet, which can be found on all LS&Co. products and provides garment care instructions to help consumers save water. LS&Co. also launched its “Are You Ready to Come Clean” consumer quiz to help raise awareness about the benefits of washing jeans less frequently. The company was also one of the founding members of the Better Cotton Initiative and created the apparel industry’s first Water Recycle/Reuse standard.

LS&Co.’s Water<Less™ techniques can be found on the company’s website.

Forward Looking Statement

This news release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, including statements regarding the Company’s sustainability and water savings targets. We have based these forward-looking statements on our current assumptions, expectations and projections about future events. We use words like “believe,” “will,” “so we can,” “when,” “anticipate,” “intend,” “estimate,” “expect,” “project” and similar expressions to identify forward-looking statements, although not all forward-looking statements contain these words. These forward-looking statements are necessarily estimates reflecting the best judgment of our senior management and involve a number of risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those suggested by the forward-looking statements. Investors should consider the information contained in our filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”), including our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year 2015, especially in the “Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations” and “Risk Factors” sections. Other unknown or unpredictable factors also could have material adverse effects on our future results, performance or achievements. In light of these risks, uncertainties, assumptions and factors, the forward-looking events discussed in this news release may not occur. You are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date stated, or if no date is stated, as of the date of this news release. We are not under any obligation and do not intend to update or revise any of the forward-looking statements contained in this news release to reflect circumstances existing after the date of this news release or to reflect the occurrence of future events even if experience or future events make it clear that any expected results expressed or implied by those forward-looking statements will not be realized.

About Levi Strauss & Co.

Levi Strauss & Co. is one of the world‘s largest brand-name apparel companies and a global leader in jeanswear. The company designs and markets jeans, casual wear and related accessories for men, women and children under the Levi’s®, Dockers®, Signature by Levi Strauss & Co.™, and Denizen® brands. Its products are sold in more than 110 countries worldwide through a combination of chain retailers, department stores, online sites, and a global footprint of approximately 2,800 retail stores and shop-in-shops. Levi Strauss & Co.'s reported fiscal 2015 net revenues were $4.5 billion. For more information, go to http://levistrauss.com.

View source version on businesswire.com: http://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20160322005444/en/
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