Greensboro, NC, June 4, 2020 – Unifi, Inc. (NYSE: UFI), one of the world’s leading innovators in recycled and synthetic yarns, reached a key goal set in 2017, transforming more than 20 billion PET bottles. The driver of this new milestone was Unifi’s REPREVE® platform of recycled performance fibers, which has been adopted by more than 500 global brand and textile partners.
“As we celebrate World Environment Day this week, we want to thank all of our brand and mill partners around the globe for helping us reach this significant achievement and working with us to reduce plastic bottle waste,” said Tom Caudle, President & Chief Operating Officer of Unifi. “Because it takes one plastic bottle an average of 450 years or more to start decomposing, it’s important to keep as much plastic as possible out of our natural and urban landscapes. If each of us makes a conscious effort to recycle, we can improve our environment for today and can protect it for the future.”
To put the milestone into context, 20 billion single-serve plastic bottles can physically circle the earth approximately 100 times or fill the Empire State building more than 13 times. Recycling and transforming these bottles has the potential to:
- Save enough energy to power more than 189,000 average homes for one year;
- Save more than7 billion liters of water, the equivalent of one year of drinking water for approximately 2.3 million people; and
- Improve air quality by avoiding more than 517 million kilograms of CO2 emissions, the equivalent of eliminating CO2 emissions from the consumption of 1.2 million barrels of oil.
This milestone is also the equivalent of keeping 156 plastic bottles per U.S. household (assuming approximately 128 million U.S. households) out of the landfill and transforming them into sustainable fabric with REPREVE® recycled performance fibers that are used in apparel, upholstery, automotive and industrial applications.
The idea for REPREVE® was born in the early 2000s when Unifi was looking for a way to recycle its own fiber waste. The solution evolved to include using recycled plastic bottles as raw material for fiber, with the option to add performance capabilities like moisture-wicking and odor control. In addition to keeping bottles out of landfills and giving them a second life, REPREVE® production uses less energy and water, while also producing fewer greenhouse gas emissions compared to manufacturing virgin synthetic fibers.
“Sustainability and recycling are key priorities for Unifi, and we are proud to lead by example as we continue to drive awareness of the importance of recycling,” Caudle concluded. “Consumer demand for more sustainable products will continue to drive demand for REPREVE® from our brand, retail, and mill partners, and that will help us reach our goal of transforming 30 billion bottles in 2022.”
About Unifi: Unifi, Inc. (NYSE: UFI) is a global textile solutions provider and one of the world’s leading innovators in manufacturing synthetic and recycled performance fibers. Through REPREVE®, one of Unifi’s proprietary technologies and the global leader in branded recycled performance fibers, Unifi has transformed more than 20 billion plastic bottles into recycled fiber for new apparel, footwear, home goods and other consumer products. The Company’s proprietary PROFIBER™ technologies offer increased performance, comfort and style advantages, enabling customers to develop products that perform, look and feel better. Unifi continually innovates technologies to meet consumer needs in moisture management, thermal regulation, antimicrobial, UV protection, stretch, water resistance and enhanced softness. Unifi collaborates with many of the world’s most influential brands in the sports apparel, fashion, home, automotive and other industries. For more information about Unifi, visit Unifi.com.
About Repreve: Made by Unifi, Inc. (NYSE: UFI), REPREVE® is the global leader in branded recycled performance fibers, transforming more than 20 billion plastic bottles into recycled fiber for new clothing, shoes, home goods and other consumer products. REPREVE is the earth-friendly solution to making consumers’ favorite brands more environmentally responsible. Found in products from many of the world’s leading brands, REPREVE fibers can also be enhanced with Unifi’s proprietary technologies for increased performance and comfort. For more information about REPREVE, visit repreve.com, and connect with REPREVE on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram. REPREVE® is a trademark of Unifi, Inc. REPREVE® is a trademark of Unifi, Inc.