American Eagle Outfitters, Inc. reaffirms its commitment to sustainability through the use of more sustainable raw materials and manufacturing techniques, water reduction, and the development of a limited American Eagle (AE) jeans collection using guidelines as a part of the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Jeans Redesign project. The AE x Jeans Redesign collection uses guidelines developed by the Foundation’s Make Fashion Circular team alongside over 80 denim experts, and adheres to the principles of a circular economy where clothes are made with limited impact, are recyclable and are long-lasting to be kept in use. This is an important step for AEO as it progresses the practice to make AE jeans more sustainable and circular, reinforcing the promise to offer customers great styles that feel good to wear and are made with the planet in mind.
“By taking measures to ensure more responsible product sourcing, we are working hard to help create a healthier environment for future generations. As part of AEO’s broader sustainability goals, we’ve made a commitment to move toward more sustainable raw materials and manufacturing techniques, as well as reducing our water and energy usage,” said Jay Schottenstein, Executive Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Our adoption of the guidelines set by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation for the AE x Jeans Redesign collection represents AEO’s ongoing journey and pledge to accelerate improvements across our operations through innovation and collaboration.”
“As a leader in jeans, we have a responsibility to push for changes in our own sustainability practices and influence the apparel industry to work toward a more circular economy,” said Jennifer Foyle, Chief Creative Officer of AEO Inc. and Global Brand President of Aerie. “We want our customers to feel good about how their clothes were made—and the AE x Jeans Redesign collection highlights our expertise in jeans, while demonstrating our passion to create products that lessen the environmental impact.”
About AE x Jeans Redesign
Using the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s guidelines, the innovative design process meets the following requirements:
- Durability: Designed to last, withstanding home laundering and featuring wash and care instructions on each piece.
- Recyclability: Made of 100% organic cotton with easy-to-remove hardware, making the jeans easily recyclable.
- Material Health: Produced without the use of harmful chemicals and processes, making the styles better for the environment.
- Traceability: Every garment in the AE x The Jeans Redesign collection will be easily identifiable for ease of apparel recycling.
- The collection features on-trend styles from AE’s fashion denim including two Mom jean fits, which offer a looser silhouette, and two slim jean styles for men. Available exclusively on www.ae.com and priced at $59.95.
About AEO’s Sustainability Goals
AEO released a comprehensive plan in 2019 and to date, has:
- Decreased the amount of water used to make jeans by nearly 7 gallons per jean, compared with 2017.
- Saved a total of 4.5 billion gallons of water since 2017 due to recycling and reduction efforts. Reduced water usage in jeans by 21% in 2020 with new processes and technology in mills and laundries.
- Conserved an estimated 2.4 billion gallons of water in 2020 as a result of cotton sourcing practices as part of the Better Cotton Initiative (BCI) and garnered an additional profit of $4.7M for BCI farmers as part of the initiative.
- Used 37% sustainably sourced cotton in 2020.
- Strengthened its Water Leadership Program, which has covered production guidelines for denim laundries since 2017. It now covers all denim mills used by AEO, pushing for the best water management and water recycling practices.
- Used almost 70 million plastic bottles in recycled polyester in 2020.
- Continued to engage with the industry for systemic improvements in garment manufacturing, through partnerships with the Sustainable Apparel Coalition, Textile Exchange, Canopy, Better Cotton Initiative, RE100 and the UN Fashion Industry Charter for Climate Action.