French luxury conglomerate LVMH (Louis Vuitton, Dior, Loewe, etc.) is partnering with textile recycling company Weturn to move on with its circularity solutions. The French start-up claims to have created the first recycling chain dedicated to unsold textiles, rolls of fabric and offcuts from major fashion houses by transforming them into new yarns and fabrics that are 100% traceable and European-made.
Through this recycling chain customers are given access to a network of logistics specialists, recyclers, spinners and textile manufacturers who try to conserve resources and raw materials by prolonging their life span. By combining digital sorting and low-cost collection tools, Weturn says that it can develop and distribute new materials at competitive prices aligned with the market.
While according to statistics, the closed-loop recycling rate in the textile industry is currently varying and it is difficult to receive reliable data, Weturn’s initiative wants to provide planning security and to allow fashion houses to recycle their unsold products protected by intellectual property, after considering donation and reuse solutions, to create new eco-designed textiles.
As for LVMH, the group has set various objectives through its Life 360 environmental program and, for example, by 2030 wants all its new products to follow an eco-design approach, with a controlled environmental footprint, from the extraction of materials to their processing, and its whole strategic supply chains to have a dedicated traceability system.
“Today, this partnership [with Weturn] allows us to take a new step towards achieving our ambition in the field of creative circularity, which is one of the four strategic priorities of Life 360, our environmental policy for the next 10 years. As our designers continue to integrate more and more upcycling into their collections, as the Nona Source platform enables them to obtain high-quality unused fabrics and leathers, and as Cedre [a company specialized in waste collection] intervenes in the end-of-life of products, Weturn offers our Maisons the opportunity to recycle their unsold finished products, branded fabrics and textile packaging in the form of spools of thread. This creates a complete ecosystem around creative circularity, which is a source of inspiration for our designers,” says Hélène Valade, environment development group director, LVMH.
Weturn was founded in 2020 with an eye on the coming French AGEC law (anti-waste for a circular economy), which will prohibit the destruction of new and unused textile materials by businesses starting on January 1, 2022.