H&M seems determined to do the right thing–it just might take a little longer than the company intended. Take their new recycled denim capsule collection, for example. The five recycled fashion styles for men and women are set to launch in February 2016–and represent a program four years in the making.
H&M’s Conscious Collection–which began in 2011–demonstrated the company’s commitment to recycled fashion and sustainable fabrics, and made it the number-one purchaser of organic cotton worldwide by 2014.
In 2012, the company launched a massive recycling initiative in all 53 markets, placing donation boxes in stores and encouraging shoppers to donate in exchange for new merchandise discounts. The program collected nearly eight million pounds of used clothing, according to WWD.
And now we know where some of that clothing went: On the heels of last month’s “Global Challenge Award” announcement, in which the H&M Conscious Foundation announced it would give $5 million to innovators who could “close the loop” on textile recycling, it leaked this recycled fashion news.
The challenge is that H&M is just so massive, it’s a difficult ship to turn. The company manufactures more clothing than any other in the world–except for Zara. And although it was one of the first to make its supplier list transparent, and to improve conditions for Bangladeshi workers, H&M was recently accused of “dramatically” lagging behind on correcting the factory hazards there, according to Ecouterre.
But the news of a major retailer launching an all recycled collection is nothing but good, I think. Now if we could just get them involved in the Shop Drop Challenge…