Circular Economy in Apparel – Thematic Research

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Circular economy aims to retain as much value as possible from materials in use to create a system that allows extended end-of-life through optimal reuse, refurbishment, remanufacturing, and recycling at each stage. Global cooperation is needed to create policies toward adopting a circular plastic economy.

The circular economy in apparel thematic intelligence report assesses how circular economy can be used in the apparel industry to reduce waste. It provides an overview of the current landscape, including technology, regulatory, and macroeconomic trends. The report provides an industry-specific analysis based on GlobalData databases and surveys.

Key Trends

The main trends shaping the circular economy space in the apparel industry are classified into three categories: technology trends, macroeconomic trends, and regulatory trends.

  • Technology trends: The key technology trends impacting the theme are the availability of digital platforms and mobile apps for recycling and AI.
  • Macroeconomic trends: Some of the key macroeconomic trends explained in the report are COVID-19 global impact, global recession, and sharing economy.
  • Regulatory trends: Ban on single-use plastics, circular economy plan, and international co-operation are a part of the regulatory trends impacting the circular economy in the apparel industry.

For more insights on key trends impacting the circular economy in the apparel industry, download a free report sample

Circular Economy in Apparel – Industry Analysis

The apparel industry market size was $3 trillion in 2020. Achieving high recycling rates for products and devices can offer opportunities to reduce the dependency on imported materials. Moreover, circular economy can offer an economic opportunity to the fashion industry across the value chain.

Circular economy in the apparel industry analysis also covers:

  • Partnerships
  • Timeline

Circular Economy - Value Chain Analysis

The value chain for circularity in retail has five stages: design, manufacture, distribute, retail use, and recycle/reuse.

Design: The circularity of a product is defined by the way it is designed. Retailers and brands must collaborate with suppliers to introduce more raw materials which are either recycled or have a longer period of usability aiding multiple recycles. Retailers must phase out substances of concern while designing the product and look for alternatives that are more sustainable and circular. There must be transparency along the value chain to effectively phase out such materials at each stage.

Circular Economy Value Chain

Circular Economy Value Chain

For more circular economy value chain insights, download a free report sample

Leading Companies in the Circular Economy Theme

Some of the leading companies making their mark within the circular economy theme:

  • Adidas
  • Amazon
  • Depop

To know more about the leading companies associated with the circular economy theme, download a free report sample

Circular Economy in Apparel Overview

Report Pages 22
Market Size (2020) $3 trillion
Regions Covered Global
Key Trends Technology Trends, Macroeconomic Trends, and Regulatory Trends
Value Chain Design, Manufacture, Distribute, Retail Use, and Recycle/Reuse
Leading Companies Adidas, Amazon, and Depop


This report provides:

  • Insight into the theme of circular economy within the apparel sector.
  • Overview of what the circular economy is, why it is important to apparel retailers, suppliers, and consumers, and why it needs to become a core focus of apparel businesses.
  • Outlines of the apparel operators that are the market leaders within this theme, responding to the 10 key circular economy aspects, while also revealing the challengers that are set to benefit from the circular economy.
  • Discussions on the key technological, macroeconomic, and regulatory trends impacting the theme and an overview of mergers, acquisitions, and partnerships of companies in the realm of circular economy.

Reasons to Buy

  • Gain a better understanding of the circular economy theme and how this is leading to changes in the apparel market and gain insight into the players that are set to benefit from the rising importance of this theme.
  • Understand how the theme of circular economy has been impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Better understand the key technological, macroeconomic, and regulatory trends impacting the circular economy theme, so you can shape your long-term strategy.
  • Discover how key players are investing in the circular economy, providing greater clarity on the actions of competitors.
  • Gain a better understanding of the actions adopted by apparel operators that are proving successful within the theme of circular economy.
  • Learn about the three different areas of technology that drive circularity today.

Banana Republic
Bank & Vogue
Circular System
Danone Aqua
Fast Retailing
Giuliva Heritage
G-Star Raw
HFS Collective
Mud Jeans
Nudie Jeans
Queen of Raw
Rent the Runway
Stella McCartnet
The RealReal
Too Good To Go
Trash Chaos
Waste Connect
Worn Again

Table of Contents

Executive Summary


Technology briefing



Industry analysis

Value chain


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