Judging by the recent spate of mainstream hemp and recycled cotton knitwear, the clothing industry is more than eager to explore sustainable alternatives to regular old cotton. The latest trend is clothing made out of recycled PET bottles. Earlier this year, Sears introduced a women's suit made out of plastic bottles, and now Anvil Knitwear is introducing its own t-shirt made out of recycled plastic bottles and transitional cotton, which is grown on farms that are in the process of becoming certified organic.
Each AnvilSustainable t-shirt uses three 20-ounce PET bottles along with cotton from transitional farms. So why not just use organic cotton? Many farms can't afford to make the switch—organic certification takes three years to complete and sucks up lots of cash— so investing in transitional efforts makes it easier for farms to go completely organic.
It's a noble idea on the part of Anvil, since the company could easily get just as much publicity by making the AnvilSustainable tees organic. Instead, Anvil is choosing to support the small farms that will be instrumental in ensuring the ample supply of organic resources.
That's not to say Anvil doesn't also sell 100% organic items. The company, along with competitors like Hanes and Jockey, offers a number of items made out of organic cotton. And now that the company has started to explore recycled PET bottle options, don't be surprised if its competitors do the same.