Coats, the world’s leading industrial thread company, is calling for industry brands, manufacturers and recyclers to collaborate with it on a new circularity concept that makes end of life garment recycling easier and cost-effective.
Coats is launching EcoCycle, a range of water dissolvable threads to facilitate the disassembly of garments. Coats is now looking to scale up its circular solution through collaboration at the garment design stage. As more industry players take responsibility for the whole of the life cycle of their products it is vital they build in the right threads and applications from the very start of the creative process.
Sonya Manolova, Product Director, Apparel and Footwear, Coats, said: ‘We are calling for industry players who want to meaningfully play their part in end of life recycling to work with us to integrate it right at the beginning of the garment design. Together we can enhance our current first generation product version of EcoCycle to accelerate circularity for our industry.’
The textile industry consumes about 100 million tonnes of new fibres each year and approximately 90% of textiles fibres at the end of life go straight into a waste stream – either incineration or land fill. Recycling has not scaled up in the fashion industry, primarily because most garments have various components made from a mixture of different materials and composites. The dismantling process is manual, labour intensive and costly, yet at the end of life many of the various fibres are reusable. Approximately 25% of clothing is never even worn, with newly bought items being put into wardrobes and forgotten, until they are eventually discarded into a waste stream without ever being used.
Following centuries of designing and manufacturing threads to hold garments together, Coats has revolutionised an element of its core product offering with the development of EcoCycle. The new thread retains its durability during the life of the garment but when washed in an industrial machine at 95 degrees Celsius, seams sewn with EcoCycle dissolve. This enables the garment to be easily and quickly disassembled by simply pulling it apart so the non-textile and textile components can be sorted for recycling.
Andrew Morgan, Head of Sustainability, Coats, said: ‘As an industry we need to reset the basics in order to deliver supply chain circularity. Sustainable innovation turns product conception and development on its head by addressing end of life first before how to manufacture it.’