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Ford to use recycled clothes in next-gen Focus

Ford will use cotton from used blue jeans and other items in the new Focus as part of its drive to find creative eco-friendly materials.

Cotton from recycled blue jeans, and other materials, will appear in the new Focus as part of its effort to use eco-friendly materials. Ford

Ford's spin on "reduce, reuse, and recycle" includes your old blue jeans.

The auto maker today announced that the 2012 Focus, on sale early next year in North America and Europe, will use cotton from recycled clothing for carpet backing and sound-absorption materials inside the car. These materials will supposedly provide a much quieter cabin.

"Ford is continually looking for greener alternatives," said Carrie Majeske, product sustainability manager. "Recycled content is a way to divert waste from landfills and reduce the impact of mining virgin material."

Ford already uses non-metal recycled and bio-based materials in new vehicles (such as the 2011 Explorer), including soy foam seat cushions, recycled resins for underbody systems, recycled yarns on seat covers, and natural-fiber plastic for interior components.

Ford says it will use the equivalent of two pairs of blue jeans in each new Focus.

"The good news is these jeans didn't end up in a landfill, nor did we use the water, fertilizer, and land to grow virgin cotton," Majeske said. "It's an alternative that our customers can appreciate, it's cost effective, and it's better for our planet. These are the kinds of sustainable solutions we are looking for in all our vehicles."