Polartec, LLC and Unifi, Inc. are launching the Textile Takeback Program – a first of its kind recycling program that recycles various polyester based fabrics; including supply chain waste and post-consumer fabrics that have reached their end of life. This waste is collected, and recycled back into a new REPREVE product offering- the REPREVE Takeback fiber.
“The industry continues to focus on ways to reduce textile fabric waste throughout the supply chain, however as a bi-product of manufacturing, waste is still created, said Roger Berrier, president and COO for Unifi. The Textile Takeback Program provides the industry with a responsible and sustainable outlet for this waste, while expanding the growth and reach of the REPREVE brand.
Both Unifi and Polartec have worked with military apparel manufacturer, Peckham Inc. of Lansing, Michigan, to define a process allowing for Polartec polyester cut-waste to be recycled back into Polartecs exclusive REPREVE 100 branded yarn. This new yarn will now include a blend of recycled bottles and recycled fabrics and will be used to produce performance Polartec fabrics for the outdoor apparel market.
In typical garment manufacturing, 10 to 20 percent of all fabric produced becomes cut-waste left over after panels are cut, says Andy Vecchione, president and CEO of Polartec. This fabric has historically been down cycled into batting or simply sent to the landfill. We can now use this waste stream to create new, first-quality performance Polartec fabrics. Polartec has pioneered the recycled fabric category and we continue our commitment to reducing our overall footprint. In 2011, over 40% of our total production will utilize REPREVE 100 recycled yarns and we expect that number to grow in 2012 and beyond.
The REPREVE Textile Takeback Program will be expanding to include other qualified partners in the near future.