Swedish textile recycling innovator Re:newcell AB has announced that it has reached an agreement with the leading Chinese viscose manufacturer Tangshan Sanyou Group to supply 175 000 tonnes of Circulose dissolving pulp derived 100 percent from discarded and recycled textiles. The five-year deal, facilitated by Ekman & Co AB, a leading global trading house for forest products, is seen as a significant milestone in the scaling of circular and biodegradable materials for the fashion industry.
According to a statement, Re:newcell will deliver its recycled Circulose dissolving pulp from its future plant in Sundsvall in Sweden. The agreement with Tangshan Sanyou is a key element to securing the financing for the new plant which is set to start production in the first half of 2022.
Once operational, the new plant will be capable of recycling the equivalent of 300 million t-shirts, helping to close the loop on fashion and reducing fashion’s reliance on virgin materials like cotton and oil.
We have had this goal in mind for a long time, and it feels unreal that we are there. I am truly impressed by the industry leadership shown by Tangshan Sanyou and immensely proud of the Re:newcell team for getting us to this point. Together, Re:newcell, Tangshan Sanyou, and Ekman are firmly committed to delivering on our promise to make fashion sustainable at scale, commented Patrik Lundström, CEO of Re:newcell.
Re:newcell and Tangshan Sanyou have worked together closely since 2019 to develop ground-breaking high-quality viscose staple fibers made from Circulose dissolving pulp recycled from post-consumer and post-industrial textile waste.
These efforts resulted in fibers that have been launched in retail by global fashion brands such as H&M and Levi’s in 2020, proving the commercial potential of circular material to replace virgin fibers in a wide range of fashion applications.
The global fashion industry is striding forward on the road to sustainability. Leading the charge, we have developed and used recycled pulp from Re:newcell, cooperated, and successfully scaled up an innovative viscose product called Circulose fiber. As one of the world’s well-established viscose manufacturers, Sanyou strictly adheres to the concept of green development and takes active actions to jointly protect the global ecological environment” confirms Zheng Baishan, Chairman of Tangshan Sanyou Group Xingda Chemical Co.
Re:newcell and Ekman have worked in close partnership to bring Circulose to market.
Circulose, the 100 percent recycled dissolving cellulose is an innovative product with great demand from the global textile industry. We are proud to be a partner in introducing and marketing this groundbreaking new sustainable product and working together with our long term partners Sanyou and Re:newcell, said Benny Johansson, SVP, Pulp Sales at Ekman.
The announcement is celebrated by Canopy, a Canadian NGO with the mission to protect ancient and endangered forests globally. Through their CanopyStyle campaign, CanopyStyle Audits, and annual Hot Button Ranking, Canopy supports the adoption and scaling of Next Generation fibers throughout the fashion value chain.
This exciting agreement will help bring vital Next Generation Solutions to life and save forests in the process. Today’s announcement will ensure commercial volumes of Next Generation viscose will be available to a growing market ready for change. Hundreds of fashion brands want to stop the degradation of forests from textile production and we expect long line-ups for this product, said Nicole Rycroft, Executive Director of Canopy.