How do companies approach circular economy? What are the biggest challenges? In a workshop at the Textiles Partnership Working Meeting, around 30 members exchanged views on this topic.
The topic of circular economy is booming – also in the Textiles Partnership. Since 2020 an expert group is working on the topic and in March 2021 we started a project on circular product clones. In the workshop on 18 May, several Partnership companies reported that they have already become active in the field of circular economy. They have conducted training courses and built working groups within their companies.
In all of this,careful coordination and Koordination und vor allem eine abteilungsübergreifende Kommunikation within the company is important: "We need joint projects and a first step would be to take different players and teams into companies that otherwise do not communicate with each other in order to realize projects." Decision makers should be involved earlier and more closely in the processes.
Multiple approaches to solutions: Recycling, re-use and take-back systems
Several participants reaffirmed that great importance was attached to the longevity and high quality of the materials in order to enable, for example, "textile to textile" recycling and circular business models.
The workshop also showed that many companies are already experimenting with pilot projects, but that industry-wide solutions have so far been lacking. Nevertheless, the members agreed that one should not concentrate too much on the search for the perfect solution, but that one should approach various solutions step by step. Interim solutions could be to use more recycled materials, to lend or rent clothes to customers. It is also possible to have our own take-back system that creates incentives for customers to return worn clothes instead of throwing them away.
The workshop was part of this year's Textiles PartnershipWorking Meetine on 17 and 18 May in Berlin. The unconferenceformat offered Partnership members the opportunity to propose their own topics and questions that they would like to work on together.