The TEXroad Foundation Addresses Looming Circular Textile Roadblock
Zwolle, the Netherlands, 21 Nov 2022 -- As the textile industry struggles to transition to the circular economy, Dutch foundation TEXroad is filling a critical gap – a common language and real-time data to align the public and private sectors and scale circular textile solutions.
In the past five years there have been hundreds of millions of Euro and countless hours dedicated to making circular textiles a reality, and this investment is increasing every day. Unfortunately the data needed by businesses, consortia and the public sector is too old, inaccessible or simply doesn’t exist. The result is a disconnect between innovation, investments and policy decisions and a serious roadblock to the European circular textile industry. The TEXroad Foundation delivers a solution by opening the flow of standardised data to align the public and private sectors, develop critical knowledge and define incentives for textile circulation.
“The data situation creates confusion about how to implement innovations, investments and incentives that will actually help keep textiles circulating. We set up our first two initiatives to address this, focusing specifically on challenges leading up to the separate textile collection mandate in 2025 and data silos between circular textile projects and digital platforms in Europe,” says Traci Kinden, acting director of the foundation.
An estimated 5,4-6,4M tonnes of post-consumer textiles are generated within the EU every year, with 65-70% going to waste and approximately €6-7T in new investments needed to increase how much of this is collected, reused and recycled.*
Today, expensive research reports and incomplete trade data are the only widely available information for circular textiles. By the time this data is available, it is 2-5 years old, and sources disagree about the same figures. Solutions such as software and digital product passports can help, but they are still new and cannot provide the full picture individually.
TEXroad’s programs use a common language to get everyone on the same page and co-develop a up to date picture of textile flows in Europe. Participants can then use standardised data from their own materials flows for a range of applications, including B2B relationships, public-private partnerships, investment evidence or regulatory compliance reporting.
A common language and accessible data is critical to a successful transition to circular textiles, and the TEXroad Foundation is leading the way.
*Sources: Joint Research Commission: Circular economy perspectives in the EU Textile sector, 2021; McKinsey: Scaling textile recycling in Europe, 2022)