By 2050, textiles in Europe must be fully circular. Therefore, a few years ago France started to introduce extended producer responsibility (EPR), the Netherlands has made plans for an EPR in 2023 and Wallonia has started a preliminary study on new legislation around the EPR. In an EPR, producers become responsible for the life and end life of the textiles they produce, companies will then have a take-back obligation. How will Belgium go about this?
The first phase launched, February 16, 2022. The Belgian fashion federation Creamoda, the Federation of Belgian Textile Care (FBT) and professional federation of manufacturers, distributors and service providers Febelsafe jointly presented a new project called Circletex vzw. A boost for the EPR in Belgium!
Circletex is setting up a national collection system to collect the released textile flows in Belgium, sort them for local reuse and, if possible, recycle them into new fibers. Circletex will initially start in the form of a study on the quantities and composition of produced and end-of-life textiles in Belgium, as well as on existing recycling technologies and standards, in order to then look for possible collection and processing scenarios for the collection concept. After that research, the goal is to set up a management organization for end-of-life textiles.
The collection will start with industrial clothing, including flat linen, workwear and protective clothing. Companies can already voluntarily participate in the project and pay a small contribution per kilogram of textiles to support the research, they will get this contribution back when the research is completed and a mandatory EPR is rolled out.
COSH! looks forward to the implementation and results of this project and hopes to see an EPR for all types of textiles soon. Want to learn more about extended producer responsibility in general? Read this blog blog on COSH! Curious about how the Netherlands is tackling the EPR? Then click here.