Textile waste is now the fastest growing segment of the USA’s waste stream, with the amount of discarded textiles increasing annually. A new initiative focused on the North American textile-to-textile recycling market that will provide the most representative snapshot of textile waste composition generated in the USA. The Sorting for Circularity USA Project aims to understand and evaluate the business case for textile-to-textile recycling, ensuring that used textiles move to their best and highest end use. Although some of this waste is reused, 85% of the textile waste still ends up in landfills. The results of this 18-month project will inform decisions for investments and actions to scale collection, sorting and recycling innovations.
»After successful initiatives across such large regions as Europe and India, the US presents a great opportunity for innovation and circularity considering the volume of the consumer market and post-consumer textiles landscape.«
Katrin Ley, Managing Director, Fashion for Good
Driven by Fashion for Good, Amsterdam/Netherlands, the Sorting for Circularity USA Project is facilitated by brand partners, adidas, Inditex, Levi Strauss & Co., and Target, as well as Eastman, H&M and Nordstrom, as external partners.
The project aims to achieve its goals through 2 objectives; conducting an extensive consumer survey to map the journey a garment takes from closet to end of use, and conducting a comprehensive analysis of post-consumer textiles using innovative, near-infrared spectroscopy (NIR) technology to understand their composition.
Sorting for Circularity, a framework created by Fashion for Good and Circle Economy, Amsterdam, aims to (re)capture textile waste, expedite the implementation of game changing technologies and drive circularity within the fashion value chain. The framework is based on insights from the collaborative report “Unlocking the Trillion Dollar Fashion Decarbonization Opportunity”, which charts a trajectory for the industry to meet its net-zero ambition by 2050, highlighting the potential and significant impact on carbon emissions in the industry through material efficiency, extended and re-use of waste. Created with scalability in mind, the Project was first initiated in Europe, and has now expanded to include Sorting for Circularity India and the USA.