Hong Kong is lead­ing the way when it comes to re­cy­cling tex­tiles

China Daily (Hong Kong) - - TREND -

Re­cently, the non­profit H&M Foun­da­tion and the Hong Kong Re­search In­sti­tute of Tex­tiles and Ap­parel opened two tex­tile re­cy­cling fa­cil­i­ties in Hong Kong.

This is the first time that hy­dro­ther­mal re­cy­cling tech­nol­ogy, which won the top award at the In­ter­na­tional Ex­hi­bi­tion of In­ven­tions of Geneva, is be­ing used on a large scale.

In ad­di­tion, a minia­tur­ized Gar­ment-To-Gar­ment Re­cy­cling Sys­tem, has been set up as a re­sult of a col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween HKRITA and Novetex Tex­tiles Limited.

The fa­cil­i­ties are a re­sult of an in­no­va­tive part­ner­ship with HKRITA to ac­cel­er­ate re­search in tex­tile re­cy­cling; and to speed up the de­vel­op­ment of a closed loop for tex­tiles to safe­guard the en­vi­ron­ment.

In Septem­ber 2017, a year into the four-year long part­ner­ship with the foun­da­tion, HKRITA came up with the hy­dro­ther­mal method of re­cy­cling cot­ton and polyester blends — which used to be con­sid­ered un­re­cy­clable — into new fibers.

Mean­while, the chief ex­ec­u­tive of the Hong Kong Spe­cial Ad­min­is­tra­tive Re­gion, Lam Cheng Yuet-Ngor, and Yang Weix­iong, the sec­re­tary for In­no­va­tion and Tech­nol­ogy Bu­reau at­tended the open­ing cer­e­mony of a new pre-in­dus­trial size fa­cil­ity us­ing this tech­nol­ogy.

Speak­ing at the event, Lam Cheng said that when it came to waste tex­tiles, the re­gion pro­duced 120,000 tons in 2016. And she said that the new en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­duc­tion line would help the rein­dus­tri­al­iza­tion of the re­gion.

She also added that the govern­ment is de­voted to pro­mot­ing rein­dus­tri­al­iza­tion by pro­vid­ing in­fra­struc­ture, fi­nan­cial re­sources, tech­ni­cal sup­port, and train­ing.

Sep­a­rately, the in­no­va­tion lead of the H&M Foun­da­tion, Erik Bang said: “This (re­cy­cling) is a sig­nif­i­cant step to­ward a new fash­ion in­dus­try that op­er­ates within the plan­e­tary boundaries.

“And as we scale up and make this tech­nol­ogy freely avail­able to the in­dus­try, we will re­duce the de­pen­dence on limited nat­u­ral re­sources to dress a grow­ing global pop­u­la­tion.”

Also, along­side the minia­tur­ized Gar­ment-To-Gar­ment Re­cy­cling Sys­tem a re­tail shop sell­ing re­cy­cled gar­ments was opened. So, cus­tomers can bring in their un­wanted clothes, and watch the con­tain­er­sized sys­tem re­cy­cle their gar­ments.

“See­ing is be­liev­ing, and when cus­tomers see what a valu­able re­source gar­ments at end of life can be, they will take to re­cy­cling and rec­og­nize the dif­fer­ence their ac­tions can make,” says Bang.

The Gar­ment-To-Gar­ment Re­cy­cling Sys­tem is the re­sult of col­lab­o­ra­tion be­tween HKRITA, the H&M Foun­da­tion and a tex­tile-re­cy­cling mill and lo­cal spin­ning mill. The sys-


The Gar­ment-To-Gar­ment Re­cy­cling Sys­tem.


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