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Minidocumentary follows students as they explore T-shirt sustainability

Swatches | December 1, 2020 | By:

Katy Powers takes a photo of Sydney Parker in the middle of a cotton field at Grant Farms in Garysburg, N.C. The North Carolina State University students are featured in the Crop to Campus documentary about T-shirt sustainability. Photo: Business Wire.

Apparel company HanesBrands Inc. has released a seven-part minidocumentary that follows three North Carolina State University students on an all-questions-answered journey from a cotton field to a finished T-shirt.

The Crop to Campus documentary, created by award-winning filmmaker Rod Murphy, follows the students from the Wilson College of Textiles as they interact with farmers, employees and communities integral to making a Hanes® ComfortWash T-shirt, according to a press release from HanesBrands. Murphy followed the students to cotton fields and yarn spinning in the southeast United States; to HanesBrands-owned fabric knitting, cutting and sewing facilities in El Salvador; and finally back to campus in Raleigh, N.C.

“This was a great project primarily because of the openness of everyone involved,” Murphy says. “No topics were off the table. As seniors, the students came into this project at a crossroads where they are passionate about textiles and apparel but deeply concerned about fashion’s impact on the future of the planet.”

HanesBrands commissioned the documentary to assess how well its corporate social responsibility resonates with the expectations of Millennials and Generation Z. Episodes are available at

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