Today is a big moment for me personally as we launch a sustainable ‘factory-to-retail’ hanger in collaboration with Arch & Hook and with the support of the British Fashion Council – a project that has been close to my heart for the past year.
The Arch & Hook BLUE® model is the first 100% recycled and fully circular hanger made from ocean plastics, providing an eco-friendly version to the billions of garment hangers usually sent to landfill after that apparel distribution process. Crucially the BLUE® hanger is recyclable and can be collected for re-use or re-manufacture into hangers over and over again.
The unknown, unseen stage is when garments are transported from factories to stores before being discarded for branded front of house hangers. Take a look at these figures: it is estimated that 150 billion garments are produced globally every year. There are currently no figures available for hanger production, on a local or global level. If just two thirds of these garments use retail-to-factory hangers, this would mean that an estimated 100 billion hangers are used annually for this stage alone. The majority of these hangers are used once and 85% will end up in landfill, taking more than 1,000 years to degrade. This is where the Blue® hangers step in.
With the help of the BFC, we began sending out letters of intent to the UK fashion industry to bring in support and raise awareness about the #SwitchToBlue hanger campaign. As we continue with our campaign, we hope that companies will join us in this journey and create some positive change for the planet.