New Zealand retailer The Warehouse has launched a recycled cotton collection made with fabric offcuts. The new range is part of the company’s efforts to increase its range of sustainable products.
“When clothing is made, fabric offcuts often end up being discarded as landfill,” shares Tania Benyon, CPO, The Warehouse. “We’re giving these perfectly good materials a second life by recycling them into new fabrics.”
To produce the recycled cotton, said Benyon, their manufacturing partner takes fabric waste and converts it into new yarn by combining the used cotton fibres with wood pulp-derived viscose. The new yarn is then knitted into new fabric without the additional dyes or chemical treatment.
“Each item in our new recycled cotton range, saves water, chemicals, dyes, and carbon emissions, compared to a regular cotton garment,” Benyon added.
The recycled cotton collection is part of the company’s private-label H&H and Young Originals brands and spans a range of styles across women’s, mens’, and childrenswear.
Benyon added that by 2025, the company aims to have 50 per cent of its apparel collection made with sustainable materials and packaging.
“We want to make it easy and affordable for people to make sustainable choices, and we’re always looking for new opportunities to develop products using recycled materials.”
As a partner of the Better Cotton Initiative, an organisation that trains farmers on sustainable agriculture, more than 65 per cent of cotton material used by the company is sourced through the program.
Meanwhile, the company this month signed up to a $70 million sustainability loan with Westpac to be used on efforts relating to sustainable packaging, reduced carbon emissions, and gender equality in its workforce. The interest rate depends on the retailer’s success in meeting specific sustainability and corporate governance pledges.