Smartwool launches ‘first’ circular sock with repurposed yarns

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2023-04-13 19:02:45 – USA

Merino wool sock manufacturer Smartwool has introduced its first pair of circular socks created with yarn recycled from its 2021-launched Second Cut sock takeback program. One of the first companies to commit to a circularity focus on socks is Smartwool, according to the company.

To develop and improve the procedure, Smartwool is collaborating with Material Return, a circularity manufacturing facility situated in North Carolina, United States.

According to the manufacturer, its recycled yarn is combined with Merino wool which is responsibly sourced and is created with an elasticized arch and a seamless toe for comfort.

John Ramsey, director of product development at Smartwool, said that Smartwool's partnership with Material Return has ultimately led to a closed-loop model that goes beyond recycling. They were able to do this because of cutting-edge technology, teamwork, and customer involvement. By making an investment in this procedure, Smartwool has made great strides toward achieving its objective of adopting a more circular business model.

The business has recycled old socks into new yarn after years of testing and tens of thousands of consumer donations. The Second Cut sock is a prime example of Smartwool's transition to a circular business strategy, which entails gathering and reusing materials.

Socks are one of the most often discarded articles of clothing, according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), which estimates that just 14% of textiles are recycled.

When Smartwool introduced its Second Cut sock take-back program in April 2021, it gathered more than 725,000 pairs of socks and kept more than 54,200 pounds of them out of the landfill.

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