The textile industry is making serious efforts to become more eco-friendly and reduce its carbon footprint – AAPN member Unifi’s Repreve fabric is one great example – but the popularity of fast fashion may be hampering the overall reputation of the industry, as although the global apparel and footwear market was valued at 1.7 trillion in 2017 more thousands and thousands of tons of used clothing worth millions is disposed of every year, as this piece from Business Wire explains:
Global Apparel and Footwear Valued at US$ 1.7 Trillion in 2017, Yet Used Clothing Worth Millions Disposed of Every Year
LONDON—-According to market research company Euromonitor International, the global apparel and footwear market reached US$1.7 trillion in 2017, and is expected to grow by 2 percent by 2022.
Euromonitor International research shows that the fast fashion trend has been reshaping the apparel industry in recent years, as frequent purchase of products that will only last one season has led to the concept of disposable clothing. 350,000 tons of used clothing worth millions is disposed of every year in the UK alone, according to WRAP Charity. However, society is slowly ‘greening’ and ethical is becoming gradually integrated into the mainstream.
Marguerite LeRolland, senior research analyst at Euromonitor International comments, “In this hyper-transparency age, better-informed consumers want to know how materials used in their garments and footwear are sourced and disposed of. They are becoming increasingly concerned about the impact of human activities on the planet which has led to companies being exposed to greater reputational risks if they are found to have unfair practices.”
Euromonitor International’s 2017 Global Consumer Trends Survey found that 65 percent of respondents try to have a positive impact on the environment through everyday actions, and over 60 percent are very or extremely influenced by friends and peer-to-peer opinions on social media.
Arthur Zaczkiewicz executive editor at Women’s Wear Daily (WWD) adds, “Sustainability is a critical topic and an important source of inspiration for brand narratives and story-telling, and can help companies engage with consumers and gain their loyalty — especially on social media. The fashion industry is now becoming extremely creative when working on several platforms to build a more eco-friendly and ethical brand image from the manufacturing phase to the post-sale treatment of unwanted clothes.”