It was almost one year ago that H&M launched its garment recycling initiative, and now the eco-friendly Swedish retailer plans to launch a new denim line made from recycled fibers at the end of February. The range of jeans, vests and jackets will all contain 20 percent recycled cotton, which is the maximum amount that can be used without compromising the quality. As the company puts its, this new project will “close the loop” on their recycling initiative.
The program launched last year was such a success that it actually incentivized shoppers to buy more because they received discounts for donating their old clothes. While it might not sound very sustainable, the retailer says it’s collected a whopping 7.7 million pounds of used clothing, all of which they plan to put to good use. According to H&M’s international charity site, the company also donates three USD cents for every two pounds of clothing donated.
“We are working increasingly with recycled materials, and as a designer, it is very important to create pieces taking into account the latest trends, but also technical developments in this field,” said H&M designer Jon Loman when speaking with WWD. “We are proud to offer environmentally friendly products, in which our clients and we believe.”
Compared with many other retailers who have garnered a poor reputation recently, H&M continues to try and make a difference. Recent examples include the fact they want to pay their factory workers a living wage and disclose the names of their supplier factories in an effort to be more transparent. At their current rate, the Swedish retailer will set an example that other companies have no choice but to follow.
This post first appeared on PSFK on January 21, 2014.