Recommendations per stakeholder group


Collectors & Sorters

Recyclers

Making recycled the new norm: exploring socio-cultural barriers

  • Optimise collection methods to ensure higher quality of textiles, for instance through above-the-ground containers.
  • Assess the availability in local context as well as the material type and quality of the textiles collected to ensure suitability with recycling processes.
  • Partner with recyclers to pilot potential applications for collected non-rewearable textiles.
  • Communicate sorting challenges to recyclers, brands and manufacturers to encourage design for recyclability.
  • Communicate challenges and (im)possibilities of current end-of-use infrastructure to governments pursuing circularity ambitions.
  • Set targets and align with a regional strategy towards a circular economy for textiles.

  • Assess the availability of collected sorted post-consumer textiles in your local context.
  • Partner with collectors/sorters to test their materials and assess their potential uses and applications.
  • Communicate recycling challenges to brands and manufacturers to foster design for recyclability.
  • Set clear specifications on material grades suitable for your recycling process and make this available to collectors/sorters, manufacturers and brands.
  • Set your own or align with industry-wide targets and commitments to close the textiles loop.

Creating new materials from post-consumer textiles: overcoming physical barriers

  • Assess infrastructure needs to process collected post-consumer textiles, in collaboration with regional and national governments.
  • Facilitate non-sensitive knowledge-sharing as much as possible, to leverage the expertise in the collection field and communicate with sorters, recyclers, manufacturers and brands on the potential value of the collected textiles.
  • Build trusted relationships with partners and clients, while establishing clear agreements and expectations on the material supplied.
  • Ensure transparency on origin and future destination of sorted textiles.
  • Sort non-rewearable textiles by material composition, and, if relevant, by colour.
  • Assess investment in automated sorting technologies for post-consumer textiles.
  • Collaborate with value chain partners to test non-rewearable textiles to ensure safety in accordance with regulations on chemical content (e.g. REACH)
  • Source automated sorted textiles per material type to ensure reliable and accurate input to your processes.
  • For mechanical recycling, source colour sorted PCT as homogeneous as possible to avoid extra dyeing.
  • Assess the potential of blending post-consumer with post-industrial textile waste.
  • Facilitate non-sensitive knowledge sharing as much as possible, to leverage the expertise in the recycling field and widespread the materials' potential and value.
  • Assess benefits and costs of certifying your recycled material with a (voluntary) certification and/or standard.
    • Build trusted relationships with partners and suppliers, while establishing clear agreements and expectations on the material supplied.

Making recycling a sound business choice: reducing economic barriers

  • Assess funding opportunities to innovate or implement existing cleaning, hardware and non-compatible label removal solutions
  • Explore potential automation of activities where it is relevant to minimise handling and processing costs for collected textiles
  • Collaborate with value chain partners to understand the market value and potential of collected textiles.
  • Invest in and/or lead the development and scaling of recycling technologies for pure or blended materials by partnering with brands, manufacturers or other relevant organisations.
  • Assess funding opportunities to innovate or implement existing hardware and non-compatible label removal solutions
  • Validate quality and performance of recycled products for determined product applications



Manufacturers & Brands

Policymakers

Making recycled the new norm: exploring socio-cultural barriers

  • Increase customer engagement by implementing take-back and/or repair schemes.

  • Take-back garments once consumers no longer want to use them and partner with collectors, recyclers and mills to high-value recycle these garments.

  • Partner with or consult experienced players in textile collection to develop and implement these schemes.
  • Communicate relevant information on environmental, social and ethical performance of materials, products and processes to inform consumers' purchasing intentions.
  • Avoid financial incentives in take-back schemes that incentivise increased consumption.
  • Uptake recycled content firstly focused on quantity of products, to later focus on increasing the quantity of recycled content per product.
  • Set your own or align to industry-wide targets and commitments to close the textiles loop.
  • Retrain internal teams on circularity, its potential and current limitations.
  • Communicate your targets and goals to consumers and engage them in personal goal setting to translate purchasing intentions into changed purchasing behaviour.
  • Optimise collection methods and inform citizens on how to dispose of textiles (Regional)
  • Assess current textiles strategies to ensure the right incentives are created (Regional)
  • Set targets for textiles reuse and recycling (National)
  • Procure recycled content in own materials and disseminate lessons learnt. (Regional, National, European)
  • Inform consumers on the advantages of recycled content through campaigns. (National, European)
  • Define terminologies and methodologies for the assessment of used textiles flows. (European)
  • Assess the flows and impact of used textiles within own territory. (Regional, National, European)
  • Define a regional strategy towards a circular economy for textiles. (Regional, National, European)

Creating new materials from post-consumer textiles: overcoming physical barriers

  • Design garments that are durable (according to material health guidelines) and can be recycled (today or in the near future).
  • Avoid the presence of materials that cannot currently be handled appropriately at their end-of-use.
  • Facilitate and/or lead value chain collaboration, partner with collectors, recyclers and mills.
  • Assess the necessary requirements of the recycled PCT in your products and communicate to recyclers which certifications and/or standards cover these requirements.
  • Invest in further research into the actual impacts of recycled textiles including but not limited to chemical composition, environmental footprint, labour conditions.
  • Build trusted relationships with partners and suppliers, while establishing clear agreements and expectations on the material supplied.
  • Implement Design Guidelines. (European)
  • Map infrastructure requirements to process PCT. (National)
  • Establish end-of-waste criteria for sorted textiles. (European)
  • Enforce REACH Directive. (National)
  • Assess the implications of REACH for recycled content. (European)
  • Define testing procedures for recycled content. (European)
  • Assess use and limitations of standards for recycled content. (European)
  • Invest in the development of traceability solutions. (National, European)
  • Lead the adoption of traceability solutions in the industry. (European)

Making recycling a sound business choice: reducing economic barriers

  • Invest and/or participate in development and scaling of recycling technologies by partnering with recyclers.
  • Assess the potential to use your own textile waste from production together with PCT to reduce costs and manage resources more efficiently.
  • Conduct a long-term assessment of material pricing that takes into consideration the valuation of natural capital, resource scarcity and price fluctuations.
  • Increase market offer of recycled content in final products, to reduce pricing due to scale.
  • Invest in the development and scalability of recycling technologies. (National, European)
  • Invest in the development and scalability of hardware removal technologies. (National, European)
  • Assess the potential of sheltered workshops for hardware removal. (Regional)
  • Support the establishment of the required infrastructure through innovation grants. (National, European)
  • Source materials with recycled content through Green Public Procurement. (Regional, National, European)
  • Establish EPR to ensure affordability of infrastructure. (National)
  • Investigate potential VAT changes to allow for price parity of recycled content with virgin alternatives. (National, European)