Consideration for the environment
Sustainable Water Resource Management
Water is an essential natural resource for our daily lives and business activities. Ryohin Keikaku recognize our responsibility to minimize the environmental impact on the planet and strive to reduce the use of water in the production process from raw materials to finished products. The increasing demand for water due to the world's population growth exacerbates various issues such as water scarcity, floods, and river pollution, which increases water risks. We aim to address various water-related issues and work towards tackling the issue of unequal distribution of water resources that should be enjoyed equally.
Ryohin Keikaku is committed to preserving sustainable water resources in various areas such as within our company, our supply chain, society, and local communities. Within our company, we identify issues for each region where our stores and offices are located and promote proactive and effective risk reduction activities. Throughout our supply chain, we strengthen our business partnership with production partners who share our philosophy and work to reduce water usage in production processes, while also aiming to minimize the impact of our business activities on local communities and river basins.
Environmental management system is being managed and promoted in accordance with our Environmental Policy. < https://www.ryohin-keikaku.jp/eng/sustainability/environment/environmental-management/>
Perception of Risks and Issues
We identify water resource risks and issues from three main perspectives: our own operations, supply chain, and society/community. We recognize that water usage in the raw material production and manufacturing process has a large impact on the environment and in local communities due to potential impacts on water sources and factory wastewater. The shortage of freshwater resources has become a concern due to various challenges posed by increasing populations, industrial development, global climate change, and water pollution. We recognize water scarcity as a risk for MUJI's services and are implementing various initiatives to address this issue, such as following an environmental management system.
Water Risk Assessment
Ryohin Keikaku assesses water risks associated with its supply chain operations in the relevant regions. We actively promote effective initiatives to address the water risks faced in the regions where Ryohin Keikaku and its production partners conduct business.
Water Conservation at Headquarters and Stores
At Ryohin Keikaku, we monitor the water usage at our headquarters and stores. The results of our monitoring are used to continually improve water conservation efforts and to measure their effectiveness. By promoting water conservation among our employees, we aim to build an environmentally conscious organization.
Water Conservation Technology at Production Partner Factories
We are working with production partners to reduce the environmental impact by implementing water conservation techniques and technologies. We recycle production water at sewing factories, dye fabrics efficiently at dyeing factories to reduce water usage, and clean equipment using minimal water and recycle tank cooling water at cosmetics factories.
Reducing Water Usage in the Demin Production Process
We have revamped our classic denim series for the 2022 fall/winter season with a focus on environmentally-friendly and long-lasting basic denim. In traditional denim production, the threads are dipped in indigo dye and pulled up repeatedly, undergoing a process called rope dyeing, which involves being exposed to air and oxidizing about 12 times to reach a deep blue color. Light-colored denim has typically required three times more water than regular indigo denim due to the need for wash processing to lighten the color after being dyed with indigo.
To reduce the water usage in our production process, we have re-evaluated our dyeing process for two new colors of denim. For "blue," we reduced the number of times the thread is dyed to four, while for "charcoal gray," we shortened the dyeing time. This has not only reduced the amount of dye used but also the water usage during wash processing. Additionally, we have also minimized the steps for traditional used and bleach processing for all denim series to make them more environmentally friendly.
"Let's Start with Water by Ourselves" Initiative
Ryohin Keikaku has installed free water dispensers in selected MUJI stores that are open to anyone. Japan faces water supply reduction and insufficient budgets for updating water facilities due to population decrease and the popularity of bottled water. The stores now act as water supply points that promote tap water usage and reduce plastic waste. By taking this initiative, Ryohin Keikaku hopes to contribute to addressing the issues of water scarcity and sustainability.