Categories
Materials

234: Looop

Problem:

According to a waste statistics from Greenpeace in 2015, people in Hong Kong throw away 110,000 tonnes of textile products annually. Among these textiles wastes, there is a substantial amount made from blended materials. However, no commercially viable separation, sorting, and recycling technologies are currently available for materials such as cotton and polyester blends.

Solution:

Looop recycling system


Looop is created by the non-profit H&M Foundation, together with research partner HKRITA (The Hong Kong Research Institute of Textiles and Apparel) and Hong Kong-based yarn spinner Novetex Textiles to develop practical solutions to recycle blended textiles into new fabrics and yarns.

The objective of the collaboration is to facilitate the development of a closed loop textiles industry. The technology will be licensed widely to ensure broad market access and maximum impact.
H&M Foundation has installed a machine the size of a shipping container called Looop in its store in the Drottninggatan shopping district of Stockholm.

It invites customers to bring a garment they’re planning to discard—say, an old T-shirt or cotton dress—and watch it get broken down, then rewoven into a sweater, scarf, or baby blanket through the glass walls of the machine. The process takes about five hours, but when it’s complete, the customer can pay $15 for the finished item.

H&M Group also recently announced that it has invested in Petri Alava’s Finnish biotech firm Infinited Fiber, which has found a way to liquefy bio-based fibers—such as cotton or viscose—then transform the fibers into a range of fabrics—for instance, jersey and denim.

Discover Solution 235: Poetry for our Planet

Support 366solutions on Patreon and receive the ‘366solutions Insider Newsletter’ with updates on the monthly progress and successes of published solutions.

Leave a comment