If there’s one thing we’re incredibly good at, it is buying food that we don’t need. Food we don’t eat ends up on a landfill where it is either burnt or left to rot which produces a lot of methane, both which have an impact on climate change. Fortunately, most of this waste can be spin into yarn, something which the fashion industry has started to utilise.
As an example. around the world, people, people eat roughly 100 billion bananas a year, producing 270 million tons of waste from the peels and stalks. This waste, and various other by products such as pineapple leaves and hemp stalk, can be spun into yarn, which can then be used to make garments.
In 1960, 97% of fibres came from sustainable sources, today the number is 35% and has continued decreasing. Companies, such as Circular Systems, are trying to reverse the trend and have began innovative new approaches to waste. Technologies like the AgraLoop Bio-Refinery recycle problems into solutions, turning around 250 million tons of waste into fibre every year.
In April, Circular Solutions won the 2018 Global Change Award from the H&M Foundation, which comes with a $350,000 grant, which will be invested back into the AgraLoop in the hope of taking it even further.
The Agraloop isn’t the only sustainable technology that Circular Solutions has developed. Texloop targets the problem of textile waste by upcycling it into new fabrics. Orbital Hybrid Yarns are high-quality yarns made from recycled food and textile fibres.
Such a shift on how we source the material in our clothes is having a big impact in the fashion industry itself. Economically, becoming more sustainable as advantageous for companies. As finite resources become more expensive as the population grows, companies will have to seek out sustainable resources to satisfy the demand of the consumer. Maybe food waste is one solution to part of the problem.