Mr. Umberto DE VITA, Global Indigo Manager, Global Business Development Denim & Causal Wear, Archroma.
Mr. Umberto DE VITA, Global Indigo Manager, Global Business Development Denim & Causal Wear, Archroma.
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Archroma, a global color and specialty chemicals company, plays a key role throughout the entire textile supply chain with its specialty chemicals for different processes of textiles.

Archroma acquired the global textile chemicals business of BASF in July 2015, since then it has and continues to expand in the textile industry. In May, the company was on stage for the first time in the Kingpins Hong Kong Show which focused on denim sourcing.

In an interview with CTA at the show, Mr. Umberto DE VITA, Global Indigo Manager, Global Business Development Denim & Causal Wear, Archroma, shared his insights on the latest market trends as well as the company winning approach in the area of denim.

CTA: How is Archroma’s business doing in the textile market?

Mr. Umberto DE VITA: The textile market is growing very well especially in Asia. For Archroma, we definitely see a lot of opportunities. We are very confident in the Asian textile market, and we are investing in the region both in terms of presence and laboratory facilities. Our customers are looking for innovative products with high sustainability, and they can turn to us for ideas and solutions.

CTA: Does the acquisition of BASF’s textile chemicals business help?

Mr. Umberto DE VITA: The acquisition actually helps a lot. The two combined portfolios allow us to support the many denim mills who come to us, because not only we continue to offer them most of acquired products but also we can now offer an expanded range of solutions.

CTA: How about the denim sector then?

Mr. Umberto DE VITA: Denim is a very active market, always in search for technical and design innovations. Archroma is probably the only company offering a global footprint, a complete solution package of dyes and chemicals, and the expertise needed to support denim producers and designers with innovation and creativity.

CTA: What are the market trends for the chemicals used in denim production?

Mr. Umberto DE VITA: We start seeing more textile mills offering denim with functional features, such as water repellency or heat control, etc. and Archroma has a complete range of such solutions initially developed at active wear brands. And of course, we see that the demand for more sustainability in denim production is continuing to grow and is here to stay.

We answer the call for both trends, actually. For instance we have in our range a water repellence solution that is not based on fluorine. Another striking example of Archroma’s commitment to innovation and sustainability is our now well established water-saving Advanced Denim technology which includes innovative processes and dyes.

CTA: What do you do to show the differences between Advanced Denim technology and conventional practices?

Mr. Umberto DE VITA: In our industry in general, it is difficult to quantify the differences in use of resources. Therefore, Archroma created the ONE WAY tool to calculate and successfully quantify the reduction of costs and environmental impact.

et me give you a real-life example when it comes to Advanced Denim: Patagonia, the famous outdoor brand, used the ONE WAY tool to substantiate the environmental benefits of their Patagonia Denim collection made with Archroma’s Advanced Denim technology.

CTA: Apart from helping customers achieve higher sustainability, what does Archroma do to protect the environment in its own production?

Mr. Umberto DE VITA: Archroma strives to produce sustainably as well. For example, in our “zero liquid discharge” manufacturing plant in Jamshoro, Pakistan, the production is made with significantly reduced of water and energy consumption. Eighty percent of the water is recovered and returned for use in the production facility. The remaining water is lost through evaporation and results in 3 to 4 tons of dried sludge which is then incinerated. Incinerating the sludge creates steam, which is used in the production facility.

Our pre-reduced Indigo range, Denisol®, is actually produced there.

CTA: Lastly, is the business growing for Archroma in China?

Mr. Umberto DE VITA: Definitely. China is a large producer of denim. The Chinese government is promoting the importance of sustainability and imposing corresponding policies, which drive very good results and much interest for Archroma’s eco-advanced products and services in China.

Kingpins Show, the boutique denim sourcing show featuring a highly-edited selection of vendors, was held from 24 – 25 May, in Hong Kong.

Technology and product highlights of Archroma in the area of denim 

- Advanced Denim technology: Compared to a conventional indigo-based denim dyeing process, the technology allows savings up to 92% in water, 87% in cotton waste and 30% in energy.

Archroma offers two breakthrough eco-advanced dyeing processes under its Advanced Denim concept, namely Denim-Ox and Pad/Sizing-Ox.

Dyeing blue denim traditionally involves ten to twelve boxes prior to the sizing stage. The Denim-Ox process radically slashed this to four, and the revolutionary Pad/Sizing-Ox process reduces it yet again to just one box without sacrificing any of its fabulous visual effects.

- Diresul® RDT Blue specialties: A selection of Archroma’s blue dyestuffs that enhance blue jean’s look. They add a vast range of new shades and wash-down effects. Good combinability between them and the rest of Diresul® RDT dyestuffs create a universe of blue effects for denim.

- DenisolTM Indigo 30 liq: A newly developed pre-reduced Indigo solution that does not require stock vat solution preparation. This translates into reduced consumption of chemicals and resources, as well as reduced need for waste water treatment.

- Optisul® C dyes: They are based on the chemistry of solubilized sulfur dyes. The dyestuffs have a very high solubility in water and have no affinity for the fibers. They are especially suitable for wash down looks. Besides, there is minimal water consumption in the application processes and no generation of effluents.

- Color Atlas: A recently launched color management tool in both print and online format for stylists, designers, brands and suppliers. Over 4,300 colors are sorted and arranged under daylight (D65) and QCD under 4 illuminants.

ONE WAY sustainability online calculation tool: A systematic, fast, measurable and reliable approach to the selection of chemicals and processes. It provides precise data management to accurately compare the water and energy savings or CO2 emissions of different processes.