9 July 2013, Hong Kong
Guangdong province in China is home of approximately half of the world’s denim production supplying garment for popular high street brands like Lee, Levi’s, H&M, Hollister, Wrangler, American Eagle, etc. The recent fashion trend of distressed jeans has however resulted in the widespread use of sandblasting; together with other processing procedures they bring a lot of health hazards to workers.
Sandblasting entails blasting sand under high pressure onto the denim fabric to create a distressed look. This procedure creates a lot of dust that mixes with tattered fabric. Extended inhalation of these particles can cause severe respiratory problems such as silicosis, byssinosis (also known as ‘brown lung disease’), [...]