Building on a successful first year, PhytoGen, the U.S. cottonseed brand of Corteva Agriscience, will again team with Cotton Incorporated’s Blue Jeans Go Green denim recycling program for 2020. PhytoGen will again organize denim collection drives at industry events across the Cotton Belt to help promote cotton’s sustainability and reduce textile waste.
In early 2019, PhytoGen became the first cottonseed company to collaborate with the Blue Jeans Go Green program, an initiative that upcycles denim garments into premium housing spray foam insulation Atlanta and keeps denim out of landfills. PhytoGen collected 7,412 items through donation drives at cotton industry events and company locations in 2019.
“By teaming with PhytoGen, we are showcasing how the Blue Jeans Go Green program helps to close the loop on cotton sustainability. It also engages consumers in the process and creates an opportunity to highlight the environmental gains the industry is making,” said Andrea Samber, co-director, Strategic Alliances at Cotton Incorporated.
Local FFA and 4-H chapters participated by collecting denim in their communities. PhytoGen presented $1,500 to the chapters donating the most denim items at each PhytoGen Blue Jeans Go Green program drive. The winning chapters were Star City FFA (Arkansas), Olton FFA (Texas), Thomas County Middle FFA (Georgia) and La Paz 4-H (Arizona).
PhytoGen Brand Manager Derek Racca said the collaboration between PhytoGen and the Blue Jeans Go Green program, combined with local FFA and 4-H chapter involvement, helped raise awareness of cotton and laid the foundation for greater success next year.
“PhytoGen is excited to again join with the Cotton Incorporated Blue Jeans Go Green program in support of this important sustainability initiative,” Racca said. “Thanks to the participation of local FFA and 4-H chapters, denim will be recycled and put to good use as home insulation, with a portion being distributed to charitable organizations. It’s rewarding for PhytoGen to be involved with an initiative that supports cotton-growing communities and promotes cotton’s endurance.”
Hank King, PhytoGen General Manager, said the Blue Jeans Go Green program fits well with the overarching mission of PhytoGen and Corteva Agriscience.
“Our goal is to enrich the lives of those who produce as well as those who consume, ensuring progress for generations to come,” King said. “Working with Cotton Incorporated’s Blue Jeans Go Green program, as well as local FFA and 4-H chapters, allows us to live out our values in a tangible way. It’s good for producers, our communities and the cotton industry. It’s our privilege to continue a program that raises awareness of cotton and sustainability issues while offering a chance for FFA and 4-H chapters to compete for a good cause.”
In 2020, PhytoGen will hold denim collection drives at the Mid-South Farm & Gin Show, the Texas Cotton Ginners’ Show and the Desert Ag Conference. Prizes will be awarded to the winning FFA or 4-H chapter at each location. But anyone is welcome to participate and drop off denim during the three events.