American fashion giant, Ralph Lauren has developed a comprehensive circularity strategy to further advance its sustainability goals. The apparel brand said that they have partnered with sustainability consultancy McDonough Innovation to incorporate Cradle to Cradle certification. This certification is a stamp of approval that is given to products that fulfill the rigorous requirements for carbon management, material health, energy conservation, water stewardship, and social fairness.
Chief executive of McDonough Innovation and co-author of “Cradle to Cradle: Remaking the Way We Make Things,” William McDonough said that for innovation, Ralph Lauren has set standards for decades and has been a visionary in American fashion. Another benchmark is being set by Ralph Lauren through this new strategy as they support their authentic ethos of timelessness and create products designed to be reimagined in perpetuity.
The new strategy is based on three pillars which include the design for circularity, establishing circular experiences for consumers, and advancing a circular product economy.
By 2025, Ralph Lauren has set an immediate-term goal to achieve Cradle to Cradle certification for its 5 signature products known as “icons” which includes the company's best-selling polo shirts, chinos, denim, and sweaters. After this, the company will also apply its circular-design learnings from these “certified icons” to other key product categories.
In order to facilitate the industry’s transition from a linear to circular product economy, the company will also continue to invest in scalable technologies that will elevate the quality of recycled materials so that they are of the similar high quality, look, feel, and performance as that of their virgin counterparts.
The firm also announced a minority investment last year in a materials-science startup- Natural Fiber Welding, which recycles natural fibers such as cotton waste into high-performance textile. The company also launched its subscription rental initiative for its Lauren Ralph Lauren subsidiary- The Lauren Look. for its customers, Ralph Lauren will continue to offer more circular experiences at the beginning of 2022 which will include product collection to support resale and recycling options for beloved Ralph Lauren products and increasing the options for vintage selling capabilities.
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