The North Face is expanding its Clothes the Loop recycling program to all of its retail and outlet stores in the U.S., with the goal of recycling more than 100,000 pounds of apparel and footwear in 2015.
This story first appeared in the April 21, 2015 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The expansion of the program is being conducted in tandem with an in-store and social media campaign to encourage consumers to recycle unwanted apparel and footwear from any brand, in any condition. Clothes the Loop extends the life cycle of apparel and footwear brought in by consumers by giving them a new life through reusing items or reverting them to basic materials used for new product manufacturing. Initially piloted at 10 The North Face retail locations in February 2013, Clothes the Loop will now be available in all 83 of The North Face retail and outlet stores nationwide.
According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, an estimated 24 billion pounds of post-consumer textile waste goes to landfills each year, the equivalent of about 70 pounds of textiles per person, accounting for some 5 percent of all space.
“We’re committed to creating responsible products, both in how we design them and also in how long they last,” said Adam Mott, director of sustainability for The North Face, a division of VF Corp. “We’re expanding Clothes the Loop to help find a second life for pre-owned apparel and footwear that might otherwise go to waste. We hope this campaign gets people thinking about the life cycle of the products they buy and how they can take simple steps to help protect our environment.”
Through Clothes the Loop, more than 14,540 pounds of apparel and footwear have been diverted from landfills so far.
“We have seen fantastic results with this program to date and have received hundreds of requests from customers to expand it,” Mott said. “We are excited about this momentum and continuing to scale effective apparel and footwear recycling for more responsible consumption.”
In celebration of Earth Day, from today through Sunday, for each store visitor who brings in used products to a Clothes the Loop bin, The North Face will make a $5 donation to the Conservation Alliance, which has as its mission to engage businesses to fund and partner with organizations to protect wild places for their habitat and recreation values. Customers can also take a photo of themselves recycling their products and share it on Instagram and Twitter with the hashtags #ClothesTheLoop and #TNFContest. Anyone who tags a friend to encourage them to recycle will be entered in a contest to win a $100 gift card.