• New 35-piece collection is designed and made to be worn for longer, with the aim of helping to reduce fashion waste, and is part of Primark’s commitment to give clothes a longer life 
  • The collection is the first of its kind based on Primark’s new Circular Product Standard, a framework for how it intends to design products now and in the future.

Primark is launching its first product range designed and made to be reloved or recycled. From mid-April, customers can shop the new circular product collection, designed using Primark’s new Circular Product Standard, which is based on principles established by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation.

This 35-piece collection, which includes menswear, womenswear and kidswear, is made up of universally loved shapes, designs and colours that you can mix and match with your wardrobe staples. From fibre composition to enhanced durability and recyclability, each piece has been carefully designed to support Primark’s ambition to move towards a more circular future. This collection is the first for Primark, with more planned for later in the year.

From stylish wide leg denim and relaxed fit jeans to transitional denim overshirts and relaxed-fit t-shirts, this is a collection of spring/summer wardrobe heroes to mix and match, knowing that they can be recycled into new clothes and materials when they reach the end of their life.

The collection is priced at Primark’s typical great value, with prices ranging from £4 to £20, all part of Primark’s commitment to make more sustainable fashion affordable for customers.

Every piece in the collection has been designed and made to be reloved or recycled with a focus on three key parts:

  1. More sustainably sourced materials[1]:the clothes in the collection are made from at least 95 percent cotton from the Primark Sustainable Cotton Programme, which trains cotton farmers to use less water, chemical fertilisers and pesticides, earning an increased profit as a result. The other 5 percent is made up of trims, embellishments or buttons, which, where possible, have been designed to be removable or recyclable.
  2. Durability:everything has a life cycle, even clothes. But how long an item should last and what Primark, and customers, can do to extend its life is something Primark is challenging itself to address. This new collection has been tested for increased durability in line with Primark’s new enhanced durability wash standard[2].
  3. Recyclability:every piece is designed to be recycled at the end of its life. This means, where possible, trims and buttons can be removed so the items can be more easily reused or recycled either into new fibres or new products. Customers can drop their pre-loved clothing off at their local textile donation point, which are currently available in Primark stores in selected markets.

Speaking about the new collection, Nicholas Lambert, Circular Product Lead at Primark commented: “This collection brings together years of work to create a new framework, with the ambition of enabling our product teams and suppliers to create more circular products that are designed with the end in mind. This has led to the creation of our first circular collection of affordable wardrobe staples that customers can rewear, repair and ultimately recycle. While we hope our customers enjoy wearing every piece in the collection, we also want to bring them on this journey with us as we look to change mindsets about what an affordable, circular product looks like. This collection was created by a small group of our designers, buyers and suppliers piloting our new Circular Product Standard and, while we know this is just one small step in our commitment to become a more circular business, we’re excited to now roll these new design principles out across our business and with more suppliers, allowing us to scale it up.”

Laura Leahy, Assistant Buyer for Womenswear said: “Learning to design with a truly circular vision has been eye-opening. I was involved in the design pilot last year and I am so excited to finally see the product land in store and our customers enjoying it. What’s great about this range is that is it’s all about essentials that can be paired up with wardrobe staples time and time again. I am already looking forward to the next collection we put together.”

Jules Lennon, Fashion Lead, Ellen MacArthur Foundation said: “To address our current take, make, waste, linear fashion industry, we must transition to a circular economy for fashion, where clothes are used more, made to be made again, and made from safe and recycled or renewable inputs. Through their participation in The Jeans Redesign, and development of their Circular Product Standard, Primark is taking a step forwards in its long-term circular economy journey. Now there is a clear pathway and a need to continue driving action, at pace and scale.”

Alongside the range, Primark has published its new Circular Product Standard, a framework for how it intends to design products now and in the future. It will be used by Primark’s Product Teams and its suppliers to support Primark’s ambition that its clothes to be worn for as long as possible and then recycled at the end of their life. It will be updated annually to reflect Primark’s progress in this space.

Developed in consultation with circularity think tank Circle Economy and the non-profit sustainability educator Sustainable Fashion Academy, the new framework is built on the vision for a circular economy for fashion by the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, a global thought leader on the circular economy, and in consultation by climate action NGO, WRAP. Both Circle Economy and Sustainable Fashion Academy partnered with Primark to develop a bespoke Circular by Design training programme which aims to educate Primark’s Product Teams and key suppliers in the theory and practice of a circular economy and its application in their day-to-day work.

The launch of the collection follows a pilot of the Circular Product Standard framework last year where Primark trained an initial group of designers, buyers and suppliers in circular design. This training will now be rolled out to over 500 members of Primark’s product teams this year, along with additional selected suppliers.

[1] More sustainably sourced materials are materials which have a lower environmental impact when compared with conventional materials. Read more about our Primark Cares fibres here.

2 All denim in the collection has been tested to our enhanced durability wash standard of 30 washes, jersey to 56 washes.

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November 2023 issue

2023 A1 Buyers Guide