FOR A WORLD THAT WORKS ™
STAND TALL FOR
WHAT YOU BELIEVE IN.
WE DO AT LEE.
We passionately challenge ourselves and bring people together to create a stronger, more sustainable future.
OUR COMMITMENT BY 2025
Power 100 percent of all owned and operated facilities with renewable energy.
Utilize more than 50 percent sustainable synthetics.
Source 100 percent sustainably-grown or recycled cotton.
Increase Indigood™ dyed products every year.
Lee is committed to bring more people together to transform communities in which we operate.
Hundreds of Hours of Service
Every year, our employees spend hundreds of hours of volunteering for their communities around the world. From installing denim insulation after natural disasters to planting gardens, we encourage and support employees to give back.Dressing the Workforce
Lee has always dressed the American workforce and supported local communities. In October 2020, Lee announced it will supply apparel to workers in a new high-tech greenhouse built by AgTech company, AppHarvest. As one of the largest controlled environment agriculture facilities in the world, the site aims to grow fresh non-GMO produce using 90% less water compared to traditional open-field agriculture. It also brings hundreds of jobs to the Appalachia region, an area heavily impacted by the collapse of the coal industry. Lee is proud to be the exclusive denim provider for the workers of AppHarvest’s new facility.Worker Well-Being
The people who grow our materials and design & craft our products are the true fabric of Lee. To protect their health, promote their safety and ensure their well-being, we’ve enacted Terms of Engagement and Global Compliance Principles by which we expect all our partners and suppliers to abide.
Lee is committed to seek out more sustainable solutions.Zero Waste Distribution Centers
We are committed to embed sustainable business practices throughout our global operations and supply chain. Lee has reached zero-waste designation for all of our owned distribution centers in North America. This means that at least 95% of the waste from these facilities will be diverted from landfills through recycling, composting and reuse. We are also committed to further reducing waste in product design, retail stores and composite offices.Saving 1 Billion Liters of Water in Manufacturing
At Lee, we make sure we conserve water wherever we can. Lee has launched Indigood™ Denim, a signature denim collection that eliminates water from the denim dying process, producing a more sustainable jean. Additionally, in 2019, Lee celebrated over one billion liters of water saved during the water-intensive finishing process for our denim products, and we’re still counting.
Lee is committed to finding more innovative design solutions to deliver better products that meet consumers’ growing demand for high-quality apparel looks good and fits great and uphold our values for social and environmental impact.Making Fashion Circular
MacArthur Foundation’s Jeans Redesign. By forming guidelines that minimize waste associated with denim production, establish requirements for jean durability and recyclability, and ensure positive impacts on the environment, this initiative is transforming our approach to design. We’re developing high-quality clothing that’s less harmful to the planet, our communities, and the people who craft our products.Technology Solutions to Reduce Waste
Lee has become an industry leader in the world of virtual design, using technology to revolutionize the way we develop our products. Our advancements in virtual design technology have reduced the number of physical prototypes generated by 30%. Producing fewer prototypes saves the same amount of water as 72,000 Americans use in a day and reduces the equivalent carbon emissions of nearly 1 million passenger-vehicle miles.
Learn about our processes and terms.
While Lee’s material footprint includes very few animal-derived materials, we believe in treating animals with care and respect and actively promote and pursue further development and use of viable commercial substitutes to animal-derived materials. In cases where we use animal derived materials in our products, we are committed to ensuring the animal’s ethical treatment. Read our policy here.
Back to Nature
A collection of garments designed to biodegrade. After a piece’s useful like ends, just unscrew the buttons and return to the Earth: the rest of the product is made from compostable yarns and no rivets.
Better Cotton Initiative (BCI)
One of the ways Lee plans to meet our sustainable cotton goal is through our partnership with Better Cotton Initiative (BCI). BCI aims to reduce the use of pesticides and promote the use of efficient water use, crop rotation, and fair working conditions. Each year, Lee and our sister brand, Wrangler, increase the volume of sustainable cotton purchased – from 700 MT in 2014 to 21,299 MT in 2020. Better Cotton is sourced via a system of Mass Balance and is not physically traceable to end products. See bettercotton.org/massbalance or details.
Cradle to Cradle Certified™
A globally recognized measure of safer, more sustainable products made for the circular economy, Cradle to Cradle Certified™ products are assess for environmental and social performance across five categories: material health, material reuse, renewable energy and carbon management, water stewardship, and social fairness.
A sustainable, salt-free dyeing technique that reduces water use and cuts down on waste.
For A World That Works™
Our sustainability platform that unites Lee’s legacy of innovation and purpose with a new vision of the future. Through purposeful design, meaningful partnerships, and a commitment to the planet, Lee will bring people together to create more sustainable future.
Forest Derived Materials
We are committed to the responsible use of forest-derived materials. Lee prioritizes the use of certified-sustainable sources, with a preference for Forest Stewardship Council (FSC)-certified materials. We also actively reduce virgin material use and increase materials with recycled content, with a priority to include both post-consumer recycled materials and innovative solutions including alternative fiber sources such as agriculture residues. Read our policy here.
Global Compliance Principles
To ensure social responsibility and environmental sustainability within our complex supply chain, we expect our contract supplier factories to comply with our Terms of Engagement and our Global Compliance Principles , which are regularly audited by our internal and third-party auditors. These Principles are brought to life through our Factory Facility Guidelines and Factory Audit Procedures. Our goal is for every supplier factory to operate with the same high standards as our owned manufacturing facilities.
Durable, comfortable and natural, Hemp can be cultivated in a way that has a low impact on the environment.
The HIGG Index Facility Environmental Module is an industry tool that Lee uses to help us measure and reduce the environmental impacts of our internal facilities and our suppliers.
The Indigood™ mark means radically different dyeing. If you see the Indigood mark on any Lee products, that product was dyed with 90% less water than the conventional dyeing process.
The newest way to mimic a lived-in look, lasers can be used to create whiskers, holes, or patterns. The advanced process digitizes design and development, easily distressing a pair of Lee jeans in a few minutes.
Make Fashion Circular
Launched by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, Make Fashion Circular brings together leaders from across the fashion industry and aims to redesign how clothes are made, and make the industry more circular. Learn more.
Cotton certified to have been grown from non-genetically modified seeds, without chemical fertilizers and pesticides.
Cotton from validated sources of postindustrial or post-consumer. Recycled cotton prevents additional textile waste and requires fewer resources than virgin cotton.
Nylon made from recycled materials, which may include fabric scraps, fishing nets, or old clothes.
Polyester made from recycled materials, which may include plastic bottles, fabric scraps or old clothes.
Our owned and operated facilities will be powered by 100% renewable energy by 2025. Through our parent company, Kontoor Brands, we are in the process of establishing a Science Based Target.
A recycled polyester that is made from recycled plastic bottles, yarns and fabric scraps.
Restricted Substance List
Lee requires our suppliers and business partners to certify their compliance to our Restricted Substance List (RSL). The RSL is an integral part of quality and Manufacturing Control Programs in chemical management. Read our RSL here.
Lee plans to source 100% sustainable cotton by 2025. We define “sustainable cotton” as (1) traceable fiber with corresponding farm-level data that demonstrates positive environmental outcomes over time, (2) recycled cotton fiber from validated sources of postindustrial and post-consumer recycled cotton or (3) fiber validated from sustainable cotton management frameworks, including BCI, Organic, and BASF’s e3 program. See our goals.
Lee plans to source 50% sustainable synthetics by 2025, with the ultimate goal of 100% sustainable synthetics by 2030. We define “sustainable synthetics” as synthetics that include (1) recycled content, (2) bio-based feedstocks, or (3) additives to enhance biodegradability in polyester, nylon or spandex. See our goals.
Lee has become an industry leader in the world of virtual design. Designing our products virtually drastically reduces the physical prototypes delivered to our designers, significantly cutting the environmental impacts of product development. Over 90% of our products are designed virtually.