Collaboration is the stepping stone to fashion’s green future, says GlobalData

Fashion firms are beginning to wise up to the advantages of joining forces with their contemporaries and working together for the greater good of the industry as it looks to transition to a more circular economy, writes GlobalData, a leading data and analytics company.

Beth Wright, Apparel Correspondent at GlobalData, comments: “No company can go it alone. The transition to a more circular economy, and thus a more sustainable future, is a task the industry must undertake as a united force.

“Only by combining the collective knowledge of the industry as a whole – from brands and retailers to manufacturers and technology specialists – will a difference truly be made. The lynchpin is pre-competitive collaboration.”

Sharing learnings and best practices via open-source initiatives is proving increasingly popular in the industry. A recent example is the step taken by US footwear brand Keen to develop an open-sourced model to share how it produces footwear that is PFC-free. The aim is to help other brands achieve the same goal in a shorter period of time than if they were to go it alone.

Elsewhere, Swedish sportswear brand Houdini has partnered with fabric maker Polartec on Project Mono Air, an open-source initiative that shares information such as the components and design decisions that went into creating the circular Mono Air fleece jacket.

In addition, Dutch non-profit Circle Economy recently launched a free online guide, the Circular Toolbox, to help clothing brands learn how to establish a rental or resale business model pilot in just ten months.

Wright adds: “Industry players are starting to see the benefits of open-source initiatives, which is a positive sign. Fashion firms must set aside their egos and unite for the greater good. Winners in this space will be those that share their knowledge and achievements to truly move the needle.”

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