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Bookstore Boasts New Green Threads

December 7, 2009

The Penn Bookstore is now offering a new line of sustainable clothing called S.O.5. which features a variety of t-shirts and sweatshirts, all made from organic or recycled cotton or bamboo fabrics.

The organic cotton used in making the shirts goes through a process in which the fields remain chemical-free for about three years. This ‘transitional cotton’ can be certified as organic as long as no chemicals are used for the material. Scraps of cotton clothing are then collected, shredded and mixed with virgin cotton to stabilize the fabric and create recycled yarn, which is knitted into new garments.

Cuttings from approximately 70 t-shirts are used to make 1 new tee. The process keeps scraps out of the landfills and sorts fabric cuttings by color. Recycled fabrics use a fraction of the dye compared to new fabrics that require color to be added to them.

The S.O.5. line also features select products made from bamboo, a sustainable fiber that can grow at a rate of up to 3 feet per day.  S.O.5. ensures that its suppliers do not use slash and burn harvesting techniques to extract bamboo and do not taint water in the bamboo extraction process.

In addition, the clothing uses chemical-free ink and is manufactured in factories using wind power.

Each garment has a collection of specially designed labels that correspond to an ecological campaign with which the S.O.5 initiative is involved. The company donates 5 percent of the garment cost to one of its campaigns. For more information on the product ine, visit the Penn Bookstore or go to: http://www.so5initiative.com/about.html.

Fact

The Penn Environmental Group hosts GreenFest each semester, a campus-wide environmental festival.

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