Fashion for Good latest project focuses on scaling polyester recycling

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2021-12-10 10:57:12 – Netherlands

Amsterdam-based innovation platform, Fashion for Good, is launching the Full Circle Textiles Project – Polyester, with the goal of testing and scaling up viable polyester chemical recycling solutions, as well as promoting financing and offtake agreements from the fashion sector.

The project brings together a group of stakeholders, including brands, innovators, supply chain partners, and catalytic funders, in an effort to drive and scale disruptive innovation in the sector.

Brand partners Adidas, Bestseller, C&A, PVH Corp., Target, and Zalando, as well as affiliate partners Arvind W. L. Gore and Teijin Frontier, are among the project's supporters.

Polyester accounts for 52% of the global fiber market and being the most common fiber, it accounts for a large share of the 73% of textiles that are landfilled or burnt each year. Polyester does not degrade naturally in the environment, and the manufacture of virgin fibers contributes to the continued use of fossil fuels. Chemical recycling is one of the most promising solutions for dealing with the problem of polyester textile waste.

Katrin Ley, managing director of Fashion for Good, said that textile recycling is a fundamental goal for Fashion for Good. Now that the first Full Circle Textiles Project has proven that a united group of stakeholders from across the sector can genuinely move the needle, they can focus on applying these lessons and scaling up to another key area — textile-to-textile polyester recycling.

Fashion for Good has engaged promising innovators in polyester chemical recycling from around the world to participate in the project in order to get a clear picture of the solutions best positioned to handle the issues of recycling polyester textiles. CuRe Technology, Garbo, gr3n, and PerPETual are among the companies involved in the 18-month project, which will produce chemically recycled polyester from post-consumer textile waste for use in fabric and garment production.

The project's goal is to validate the technologies and their scaling potential, which will lead to more implementation/offtake agreements and more investment for chemical recycling in the sector.

It builds on the framework and lessons learned so far in the Full Circle Textiles Project, which investigated economically viable and scalable solutions for cellulosic chemical recycling and the production of new man-made cellulosic fibers and fabrics from cotton and cotton-blend textile waste and was launched in September 2020.

Circ, Evrnu, Infinited Fiber Company, and Renewcell, the four selected innovators, have all been able to prove their revolutionary technologies and create clothing to the quality criteria of brand partners PVH Corp. and Kering Group. The next phase of this initiative will focus on scaling these solutions and encouraging brands, innovators, and supply chain partners to participate in developing long-term alliances, catalyse investment, and harness industry experience to further develop and execute these technologies.

Fashion for Good has also launched Sorting for Circularity and Sorting for Circularity India, two industry-wide, pre-competitive projects aimed at strengthening the interaction between textile sorters and textile recyclers and stimulating a recycling market for unwanted textiles.

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