TW Special Report
Quiksilver, Huntington Beach, Calif., recently announced that its recycling program — in collaboration with Greensboro, N.C.-based Unifi’s REPREVE® — has just hit the 100 million-bottle mark. Since its start in 2012, about 3,500 tons of plastic has been repurposed into boardshorts, jackets and other garments.
Recycled polyester both gives a second life to used plastic and reduces the global footprint of a product significantly. Arguably the most environmentally impactful step of a production cycle is the creation of the raw material. Producing recycled polyester consumes significantly lower amounts of energy (45 percent) and water (20 percent) than virgin polyester. Overall, the recycled fabric produces a third less greenhouse gases than conventional polyester one.
The 100 million bottles recycled through the program save close to 9 million liters of drinking water and provide the annual energy consumption of close to 1000 households. Each Quiksilver x REPREVE® boardshort contains about 10 recycled bottles.
Made from fossil fuels, plastic is a raw material that we encounter everyday. Only 10 percent of all plastic produced worldwide is currently recycled — the rest ends up in a landfill or worse, the ocean. Today, large amounts of plastic floating in the ocean are threatening both marine life and the global climate. For more information, please click here.
“We are very excited to contribute a part to the protection of something we genuinely care about — the ocean,” said Garry Wall, global general manager of Quiksilver. “As surfers and snowboarders we need to think about the future, so our grandchildren can enjoy the mountain and the wave we love so much. Up-cycling plastic waste into something that is useful for us, even today, is an important step.”
Quiksilver and fellow Boardriders Inc. brands Roxy and DC shoes have been using Repreve yarn as an essential part of their product offering for more than 5 years.
Repreve starts the process by turning used plastic bottles into plastic flake, which is then converted into Repreve chips. The chips are then melted, extruded and converted into yarn that carries the same performance qualities as conventional polyester. On average, a Quiksilver boardshort using Repreve yarn contains about 11 recycled bottles. Currently about 50 percent of the range consists of Repreve products. Over the next few years, the brand is committed to using 100-percent Repreve yarn in all boardshorts. The snow collection will follow suit, increasing the adoption of both Repreve yarn and other sustainable materials.
“Recycling is one thing, reducing another,” Wall said. “100 million bottles are a milestone, now we are working on a refined strategy to fight plastic waste through innovative products and actions. There are still many areas where we need to improve and we look forward to bringing green values into all areas of our business, a responsibility that our industry as a whole needs to assume.”
On World Surfing Day — June 16, 2018 — $10 of every Quiksilver Repreve* boardshort sold was donated to 5 Gyres, a non-profit organization empowering action against the global health crisis of plastic pollution through science, education, and adventure.
*full-price only, Quiksilver e-commerce
Posted August 16, 2018