Every second, the equivalent of one garbage truck full of clothes is burned or dumped in a landfill. Now Europe’s largest and most popular labels/stores H&M has figured out a way to recycle old garments into new ones without the pieces even leaving the store.
H&M writes in an article on their website, explaining Looop, that their non profit foundation together with Hong Kong Research Institute of Textiles and Apparel (HKRITA for short) has developed the technology behind the invention. Right now Looop is the only in-store recycling machine - installed at Drottninggatan 56 in Stockholm, Sweden. However, HKRITA is going to license the technology widely to help the entire fashion industry to become more circular.
So how does Looop work? It’s quite easy. Through eight steps the machine turns old garments into completely new ones. The steps consist of cleaning, shredding, filtering, carding, drawing, spinning, twisting and knitting. And the best part is, the process doesn't need any additional water or dyes.
Every year, enough textile to fill up the Sydney harbour ends up in a landfill. H&M wrote on their website:
“The launch of Looop isn’t just a glimpse of fashion’s future. It’s a reminder to treat all clothes as a resource. Nothing’s too tattered or torn to be recycled — and no clothes should ever end up in the trash. Recycling is also super-important for circular fashion to work.”
Instead of fast fashion we need circular fashion. If that is to work, recycling is highly important. Since 2013, H&M has had a global garment collecting program. People can recycle any types of clothes/textile from any brand in each and every store. Looop is now helping the industry to the next step. It’s the start of a recycling revolution, as H&M wrote on the website.