BY COLLEEN PATTERSON

A few years ago, following the 2008 study of life cycle greenhouse gas emissions and food production, we realized that local foods are more ethically sustainable than the products which travels more than 400 miles from its origins to reach our table. Hence: you’re probably familiar with the phrase, farm-to-table.

The benefits of locally-sourced food is now firmly engrained in the conscious-consumer’s handbook, right next to non-GMO and pesticide-free produce.

Today, fashion is the latest consumer industry to embrace the mantel of eco-friendly. From landfills overwhelmed by unsold or barely worn fast fashion to the dire conditions of factory workers — there’s plenty we need to work on.

For Jayesh Badota, a practical starting point is with the actual material of clothing itself; his Clothing Company is one of the newest producers of ethically sustainable fashion to offer 100% organic and pesticide-free cotton.

What sets him apart? His product line is affordable and long-lasting.

As he recently told Washington Square News in an interview, “The supply chain is structured in a way that makes it easier to make something new than to recycle and reuse” and yet, ironically, those new clothes lack durability: nearly 60% of donated clothing ends up in a landfill due to a lack of quality. This week, he shared a few more of his insights and inspiration with Muses.

How long have you been a creator? Tell us how you got your start?

I consider myself as a problem solver first.

The idea behind the creation of “The Clothing Co.” is also associated with solving a problem that needs immediate attention: the problem of mankind destroying this planet. It first came to me on a short trip to India.

In India, middle class families tend to trade their old clothing to street hawkers in return for money or new utensils. It sounds weird, but it is a thing in India. On my trip, I asked one of the hawkers what would planned to do with the old clothing. He replied, “the ones in good condition, I’ll sell or pass along to family. The rest will be sent to dumping grounds.”

The answer surprised us — so I started to do a little research.

In U.S. alone, 60% of the old clothing ends up in landfills, most of which is made of spandex, nylon, and polyester which takes between 20-200 years to decompose.

That’s when I decided to start a brand which is dedicated to producing quality products made from organic, recycled, or up-cycled raw materials.

Tell us the most challenging aspect about continually creating. How do you manage?

The most challenging aspect of my endeavor is getting people to support the cause. We live in this age of computerization and digitalization where we are used to make impulsive decisions and we need instant gratification, etc. But on the flip side, I that overcoming the challenge requires that I talk directly to people and help them make conscious and thoughtful decisions.

What are your favorite types of projects to work on?

Everything I like or want to work for has to be a problem. Problem-solving is the key for me.

Have you ever had a feeling of having “made it?” What was it like?

My ideal “made it” moment is whenever I see people understand the idea behind sustainability and their willingness to do good for the environment and humanity.

If you’d like to learn more about Jayesh and his achievable plans for our environment—visit theclothingcompanyusa.com.