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Nontoxic treatment promises a cleaner way to dye

Industry News | September 1, 2012 | By:

Textile dyeing has been known to discharge pollution into waterways. Old practices die hard, but the two men who formed ColorZen LLC have set out to make the industry sustainable. Tony Leonard, a textile chemist, and Michael Harari, son of a New York City apparel maker, founded their startup in 2010 to commercialize Leonard’s improvements to the dyeing process. In July 2012 ColorZen announced a nontoxic treatment for cotton fiber that promises speedier dyeing and vastly reduced water, chemical and energy use. The process involves pretreating cotton fibers to create affinity between the cotton and the dye, making the cotton more receptive to the dye. ColorZen’s founders say that development was expensive, but they expect to make a profit in 2013.

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