A recent BusinessWeek blog post comments on Levi Strauss's addition of a new phrase to the care instructions for its jeans: "Donate to Goodwill when no longer needed and care for our planet."
This is sustainability in action from product cradle to grave (at least as far as the original purchaser is concerned). Levi Strauss devotes a page on its site to the idea that buyers should act responsibly by washing jeans in earth-friendly ways and donating unwanted jeans so they have new lives with other buyers, keeping landfills unclogged as long as possible.
Should brands preach sustainability? Well, why not? If it saves even one pair of jeans from prematurely entering a landfill, and someone else benefits from secondhand clothing, everybody wins. Buyers are free to do what they like, of course, but it makes sense to at least suggest a way to save the planet. Happy green new year.