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Prym Intimates becomes world’s first apparel accessory firm to adopt Chemical Leasing

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Prym Intimates, which is a subsidiary of apparel giant MAS has just announced the successful launch of a chemical leasing model to treat its waste water. The project follows the business model innovation launched by MAS Active Linea Intimo last year who became the world’s first company to innovate the UNIDO approved model of chemical leasing in their waste water process.

Following Intimo’s success, several more facilities within the MAS group have tested the concept on their own. The objective was to explore ways to reduce the overall chemical footprint and to cut down on the use of hazardous chemicals.

The CEO of Prym Intimates Vasu Wijegoonawardena says “We are committed to manufacturing our products in an environmentally sustainable manner and to neutralize any harmful impact to the environment from our operations. We are proud that Prym is now the world’s first apparel accessories manufacturer to initiate a chemical leasing arrangement with the aim to reduce the release of chemicals into the environment. This is a long term vision that supports our holistic journey as a group.“

Prym signed on with Watercare Technologies (Pvt) Ltd and the National Cleaner Production Centre (NCPC) of Sri Lanka. The United Nations Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO) acted as advisor to the project.

Samantha Kumarasena CEO of NCPC called on MAS to collaborate for better consumer awareness on the concept “UNIDO started this concept in 2007 having looked at the successful application of it in Europe. They have now developed this a technical tool especially for developing countries. The success of any tool depends on the level of motivation and commitment of the stakeholders and MAS has shown remarkable initiative in this regard.”

Trials began on the first week of July for ten shifts and Prym’s technical teams noted a 10% to 15% overall savings on chemicals.  A hazardous chemical used in the process was also reduced by more than 50%, according to a company spokesperson.

The agreement comes into effect from August 1st 2016 and will see Prym adopt a business model that sees the facility compensate Watercare for each cubic meter of waste water treated. The system will be monitored by the NCPC throughout.

All companies under MAS have already pledged to a roadmap to be non-toxic in both their products and processes by 2020 and have strict compliance mechanisms to align themselves to a global standard  called ZDHC (Zero Discharge of Hazardous Chemicals) which is a requirement from major apparel brands to reduce the environmental impact of the textile industry. ZDHC includes a list of 11 priority chemical groups to be phased out by 2020.

Prym’s small but committed team is proud of its own achievements in sustainability having won silver at the National Green Awards in 2013 & 2014 and is currently spearheading one of the largest forestry projects in Kanthale to grow and nurture 1,000 trees.