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EMF Fashion ReModel

PRIMARK CARES

Primark commits to further its circularity ambitions by joining the Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s The Fashion ReModel

New project aims to scale circular business models within the fashion industry.

Primark has become one of the first participants in The Fashion ReModel, an Ellen MacArthur Foundation project involving leading brands from across the fashion industry to take action to scale circular business models. Project participants will explore how to unlock barriers to scaling new revenue streams across resale, rental, repair and remaking.

Announced this week at the Global Fashion Summit in Copenhagen, Primark has joined this initiative alongside other brands such as Arc’teryx, H&M Group, Zalando and Reformation. The project is also supported by the British for Social Responsibility (BSR), British Fashion Council, Global Fashion Agenda, Fashion for Good, Textile Exchange and the Waste & Resources Action Programme (WRAP).

This initiative aligns with Primark’s commitment to give clothes a longer life, which is part of its wider sustainability strategy, Primark Cares. Additionally, whilst 55% of Primark clothing is made from recycled or more sustainably sourced materials already, the retailer is committed to making that 100% by 2030.

According to the Ellen MacArthur Foundation, it is predicted that if resale, rental, repair and the remaking of fashion could reach 23% market share by 2030, in aggregate, this could lead to an overall CO2e emissions reduction for the fashion industry of up to 16%.*

Through the Fashion Remodel, Primark will continue to build on approaches to become a more circular business and work to find solutions to enable a circular economy in fashion. Primark has been making pre-loved clothing more accessible to customers in store since it partnered with the Vintage Wholesale Company in 2022 to offer vintage clothing via Wornwell concessions. Developments are already underway for new Primark customer offerings across pre-loved, including a trial of ‘Primark presents Pre-loved’ across 7 UK stores later this month, featuring an exclusive curated collection of vintage music tees just in time for festival season.

Primark is working to embed circular design across its clothing ranges – meaning clothes that can be re-worn, repaired and recycled at their end of life. To integrate circular principles at the design stage, the retailer developed its own Circular Product Standard with support from the Foundation and WRAP and is now training all its Product teams in circular design. Progressing towards its commitment to strengthen durability of clothes by 2025, Primark has also partnered with WRAP to create an enhanced durability wash framework. Durability wash testing now covers 39% of all Primark clothing, with 57% of denim tested passing at 30 washes. Alongside this, Primark’s ‘Love it for Longer’ repair programme has expanded into six markets, with over 200 free workshops hosted since April 2023, and online via a customer hub featuring easy-to-follow repair videos.

Nick Lambert, Circular Product Lead at Primark, said: “There needs to be greater acceleration towards circularity in the fashion industry to move away from the traditional take, make, waste model. We started small with our circularity ambitions but are working to scale this within our business so it can be truly embedded in the way we design and make our clothes in the future. Scaling circularity has taken some time, but we truly believe we can use our scale to help deliver real change for the industry and this partnership will allow us to push Primark further. ”

Jules Lennon, Fashion Initiative Lead, Ellen MacArthur Foundation, said: "Through their participation in The Fashion ReModel, organisations such as Primark, are taking further steps on their long-term circular economy journey. In order to truly challenge conventional linear models at scale – and for a circular economy for fashion to become the norm – we must accelerate efforts that not only redesign the products of the future, but also the services and business models that deliver them and keep them in use. We welcome business-led action towards a world where clothes are kept in use and worn many many times - threaded through the lives of many people. We encourage others to join these frontrunners.”

To read more about Primark’s approach to circular design visit: Designing for a more circular future or find out more about the Primark repair workshops, durability initiatives or the Wornwell vintage clothing concessions.

* Ellen MacArthur Foundation, Circular business models: redefining growth for a thriving fashion industry (2021): https://www.ellenmacarthurfoundation.org/fashion-business-models/overview

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