Blu Democracy Our Mission

Supply Chain

Beginning with the fabric and ending with the final package that arrives on your doorstep, we strive to be as environmentally and socially responsible as possible. All fabric is dyed and printed using dyes and inks that are low-impact and free of heavy metals. Every element from processing, knitting, weaving, dyeing, printing, cutting and sewing to the final garment has sustainability and ethical practices in mind. This is truly a regional manufacturing model that vastly reduces the carbon footprint of our supply chain. In fact, by manufacturing with a regional supply chain in Los Angeles, CA., our overall environmental impact is less than if we were to manufacture the same product overseas.

Raw Materials

Our collections are primarily made of bamboo. Typically today, garments are made of cotton, which tend to lose shape quickly, have shorter lifespan, and more importantly, consume hundreds of gallons more water compared to a garment made from bamboo.

Sustainability

Bamboo grows naturally and does not require the use of pesticides, herbicides, or irrigation, other than the natural rainfall that it receives. Also, the bamboo does not require planting as the stalks can be cut off above ground and they will continue to grow, ready for harvest again in just a few short years. Compare this to a tree that may take 70 years to reach maturity. In addition bamboo has a vast root system network that constantly sprouts new shoots.

In comparison, Cotton is very sensitive to pest infestation and drought. Every one Kg of cotton lint production requires 10,000 - 17,000 liters of water. Cotton production accounts for 2.4% of total arable land yet accounts for 11% of global pesticide use and 25% of global insecticide use (Kooistra & Termorshaizen, 2006). Approximately 40,000 lives are lost each year due to pesticide / insecticide application (WHO, 2002). Approximately 100 million hectares of land (8% of global arable land) has been lost due to over-exploitation with the main cause being salinisation caused by improper irrigation practices employed in cotton production. And then there is the environmental impact. It's estimated that approximately 67 million birds are killed by pesticides every year (Lotus, 2004). And lest we forget, the impact on our river, lake systems and ground water caused by chemical run-offs.

What About Organic Cotton?

While organic cotton does employ organic pesticides, organic fertilizers and irrigation, bamboo culture uses nothing. As such, the environmental impact at the harvest level should be much less even then organic cotton. But more importantly, Cotton consumes 10,000 times its weight in water whether its organic or not.

You Can Really Make A T-Shirt Out Of Bamboo?

Not only can you, but its the best tee you'll ever wear! We choose the absolute finest fabrics made from Bamboo. Our signature Bamboo Sorona has many genuine qualities. Bamboo's fiber structure is filled with various micro-gaps and micro-holes enabling it to breathe providing greater thermal stability over cotton or polyester. The textile keeps you cooler in summer and warmer in winter then another fiber of equivalent weight. It has the ability to absorb water 3-4 times faster versus cotton giving bamboo fiber the ability to wick moisture away from the body. Bamboo Sorona is naturally wrinkle resistant and require less laundering care versus cotton or hemp.

Bamboo contains a natural agent called bamboo kun which prevent bacteria and fungus from cultivating on it. This allows for less washing which saves on energy, time and money.

Inks and Dyes

Our team works numerous hours alongside our dye house to develop the best colors, washes and treatments for our collection. But, certain inks and dyes can be environmentally damaging. We do not use inks or dyes that contain heavy metals. Our care and contents label on the inside of the garment are printed with a water-based ink. There is no PVC or other harsh polymer used in any of our garments. The World Bank estimated that 17 to 20 percent of industrial water pollution comes from textile dyeing and treatment. Which is why we are following this aspect of our production very closely.

The Manufacturing

Our garment factories are thrilled to be part of our team with regard to environmental and social standards. They are continually looking for new ways to support our mission. We are 100% sweatshop free and are constantly researching new methods in which to modify the production process and minimize waste and water/carbon footprint.

The Shipping Process

bluDem's unique bright blue shipping packaging is made from 100% compostable material. It can go straight into your green bin for commercial composting. We re-use our shipping boxes until they are ready to be recycled. We purchase our boxes from one of the most trusted and respected sources for green corrugated and sustainable packaging materials in the U.S. Our boxes are made from 100% PCW (post consumer waste) material - far exceeding the recycled content of ordinary shipping boxes. Our vendor is partnered with 1% for the Planet and Green America.

Transportation

bluDem believes in supporting local businesses while minimizing our carbon footprint. We work hard to keep all our vendors within Los Angeles, CA. Our primary provider is UPS who is at the forefront of sustainable logistics. We're constantly looking for innovative ways to reduce the environmental cost of shipping our product.

Our Daily Social Principles

No Forced Labor | There is absolutely no use of forced labor in out facilities.
No Child Labor | No person under the legal working age is hired at our facilities.
No Harassment or Abuse | All employees and partners are treated with respect. there is zero tolerance for any form of abuse.
No Discrimination | No person shall be subject to any type of discrimination.
Health and Safety | We provide a safe and healthy working environment.
Wages and Benefits | We pay employees at least the required minimum wage and provide legally mandated benefits.
Environmental Protection | We vow to continue to reduce our environmental footprint from seed to finished product.