Retailer H&M has revealed that it used the equivalent recycled polyester to 9.5 million PET bottles in its clothes in 2013.
In its sustainability report H&M Conscious Actions: Sustainability Report 2013, the fashion chain also said that it had launched the first closed loop products that contain 20 per cent recycled material from collected garments.
In 2013, close to 100 per cent of its worldwide stores were involved in the collection of used clothing, with H&M aiming to develop this into a fully closed loop system. It is also funding research to enable this to happen.
Around 3,047 tonnes of unwanted garments were collected under this scheme.
H&M chief executive Karl-Johan Persson said: “I believe that the way fashion is made and consumed will change.
“I hope that we will be able to produce fashion in a closed loop, using less of our planet’s resources and reducing waste instead. For the resources that we will still need, we must share them fairly between today’s and future generations.”
The company is still working towards a goal that 95 per cent of the waste handles at its warehouses will be recycled (currently 92 per cent) and it is on track to increase the share of stores that recycle the main types of store waste such as cardboard, plastic and paper (currently on 56 per cent).
It now also uses 100 per cent recycled content in its standard H&M plastic bags. As an example of its closed loop textiles, it now has a range of denim jeans on sale that contain 20 per cent recycled cotton and 28 per cent recycled polyester (from 3.1 PET bottles) and it is working on eventually using only recycled content in this denim without losing quality. At present, 20 per cent of recycled cotton content is only good enough in terms of material strength.