Puma will experiment an innovative manufacturing process that uses existing soccer jerseys to produce new ones. This initiative - called Re:Jersey - aims to reduce waste and paves the way for more circular production models in the future.
The new process aims to turn old garments that feature club logos, embroidery and emblems, which previously hindered recycling efforts into new ones.
In the recycling process, the garments are chemically broken down into their main components (depolymerization). The colors are then filtered out and the material is chemically reassembled to create a yarn (repolymerization) that has the same performance characteristics as virgin polyester.
While Puma soccer uniforms on the market today are already made from 100% recycled polyester, Re:Jersey uniforms are made from 75% repurposed soccer jerseys. The remaining 25% comes from Seaqual Marine Plastic1, a material obtained from recycling marine litter into new sustainable products.
"With the Re:Jersey project, we wanted to develop new ways to reduce our environmental impact, respect resources and reuse materials," said Howard Williams, drector apparel technology, Puma. "The insights we gained with Re:Jersey will help us develop more circular products in the future."
The products created as part of the Re:Jersey project will be worn on the pitch during pre-match warm-ups by Puma clubs Manchester City, AC Milan, Borussia Dortmund and Olympique de Marseille. The teams will wear the jerseys ahead of their respective league matches in late April and May, starting with Manchester City vs Watford on April 23.
The Re:Jersey pilot experiment is part of Puma's Circular Lab and its Forever Better sustainability platform. As part of the Circular Lab, Puma announced the Re:Suede program last year, which tests whether the company can make a biodegradable version of its iconic Suede sneaker.