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Users should embrace full cycle of apparel reuse: Report
Jun '18
Users should embrace full cycle of apparel reuse: Report
There is a continued need for consumers to embrace the full cycle of reuse – not only the act of donating goods no longer in use, but also shopping for pre-owned or upcycled products to reduce their overall clothing footprint, says a new report. The environmental impact of an item's journey continues to go unnoticed as consumers race to buy now and buy more.

While promising trends toward responsible decluttering are on the rise, 26 billion pounds of clothing and textiles still pile up in landfills each year – 95 per cent of which could be reused or recycled, states the third annual State of Reuse Report by Savers, a global purpose-driven thrift retailer.

Fifty-three per cent of North Americans donate clothing and household goods when they feel they have accumulated too much clutter. Physical reminders, such as running out of closet space, also tend to inspire action, according to the report.

When people don't donate, they are still finding other ways to extend the life of their used goods. About 32 per cent give their friends and family first pick of their unwanted items and 13 per cent sell them via consignment or online marketplaces. While more people are donating or finding other uses for unwanted items, only 40 per cent purchase pre-owned goods at least once every few months, and 60 per cent of North Americans are shopping thrift once a year or less.

The report also says that 57 per cent of respondents buy pre-owned goods to save money and 69 per cent say buying used goods feels like finding hidden treasure. Seventy-seven per cent have even been surprised by the great pre-owned items they have found.

Almost half (49 per cent) of respondents did not know that extending the life of a garment reduces its environmental footprint. Nearly 2 in 3 (64 per cent) thought it only took two years for a synthetic t-shirt to decompose, when in reality, textile decomposition takes over 40 years.

For more people to bring reuse full circle, more convenient solutions are needed, such as, more convenient donation location and more organised thrift experience.

"Savers is dedicated to helping people extend the life of goods," said Tony Shumpert, vice president of reuse and recycling for Savers. "This year's report shows a real opportunity to educate shoppers on the powerful impact they can have on the environment and their communities simply by embracing reuse and more sustainable buying and purchasing habits."

Savers commissioned the 2018 State of Reuse Report to continue its commitment to understanding how it can help consumers bring the cycle of reuse full circle. This year's report illustrates key motivators for reuse as well as the opportunity for further education on the impact of clothing waste. (KD)

Fibre2Fashion News Desk – India

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