Levi Strauss & Co. is granting more than $350,000 to help bring the inaugural class of LS & Co. Collaboratory fellows’ ideas and innovations to create a more sustainable apparel supply chain to fruition.

Levi’s launched the global fellowship program for environmentally conscious entrepreneurs in June 2016. The annual program, with a curriculum designed by the Aspen Institute Business & Society Program, aims to create a more sustainable apparel industry. Each year the program tackles different social and environmental sustainability challenges facing the industry, with this year’s class focused on water conservation.

The funding will go toward projects that include expanding a natural indigo dyeing facility, creating products that are less water-intensive and making wastewater treatment solutions more accessible to small artisan workshops.

“We were honored to bring together the next generation of global leaders to share ideas, aspirations and innovations for achieving a common goal of accelerating the sustainability of the apparel industry,” said Paul Dillinger, LS&Co. vice president and head of global product innovation. “We look forward to seeing the Collaboratory fellows’ water impact solutions come to life and inspire a future of empowered sustainable apparel makers.”

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