Joining Puma, H&M, Patagonia and several other big brand names, The North Face recently launched their Clothes the Loop program to take any unwanted apparel or footwear off your hands – even if it is not their brand.
This is all part of the welcome and growing trend in retail to have in-store recycling programs. Many of these worthwhile endeavors are popping up on a regular basis – ready to collect everything from used batteries and CDs to your old socks, shoes and any apparel.
The U.S. EPA estimates that, in 2010, over 26 billion pounds of apparel, footwear and other textiles were thrown away. Nearly 85% of that ends up in a landfill. Much of those pounds of consumer goods can be re-used, recycled or kept in a closed production cycle. It is definitely time for slow fashion. By using the model of closed production, valuable material resources are helping to protect and preserve as well as build a much healthier planet.
Clothes the Loop provides specially marked recycle bins at the participating The North Face stores. When you drop your items into the specially marked recycle bins, you receive a voucher for $10 off your next purchase of The North Face products. Currently, The North Face has 10 participating store locations which include: Seattle, Chicago, Minneapolis, New York and San Francisco.
Items provided to Clothes the Loop are sent to nearby recycling centers where they are carefully sorted based on 400+ categories. Items are then re-used to extend their life or recycled into raw materials for use in products like insulation, carpet padding, stuffing for toys and fibers for new clothes.
All proceeds from the Clothes the Loop program go directly to The Conservation Alliance. The Conservation Alliance funds community based campaigns which protect wilderness and outdoor recreation areas.