H&M is establishing the world’s first in-store combination shredder and knitter of old clothes to tackle clothing waste.
Looop, the machine that shreds old clothes into component fibers, cleans and presses them into longer fibers, and weaves them into yarn before creating brand new garments, was developed by the Hong Kong Research Institute of Textiles and Apparel (HKRITA) in collaboration with the non-profit H&M Foundation.
A statement on the fashion retailer’s website said, “To fight climate change, we need to change fashion,”
Analysis from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency suggests that fashion waste may make up as much as 5% of landfill capacity, while also producing 10% of the nation’s total methane emissions.
Looop uses no additional dyes or water, relying instead solely on the color of the scrapped clothes. The process is completed on an assembly line of eight machines that are sold like a 40-foot long piece of furniture that can be easily shipped around the world in a standard shipping container. Looop is installed at Drottninggatan 56 in Stockholm, Sweden, but the technology is available for any fashion brands that want to employ it.
“It’s a reminder to treat all clothes as a resource. Nothing’s too tattered or torn to be recycled—and no clothes should ever end up in the trash.”