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Unifi achieves goal of turning 20 billion plastic bottles into recycled fiber

Company wants to reach 30 billion bottles transformed by 2022

Unifi Inc. reached the milestone of transforming more than 20 billion PET bottles into recycled fibers – a goal the company set in 2017.

The driver for this achievement was Unifi’s Repreve platform for recycled performance fibers, which was born in the early 2000s as a means to recycle the company’s fiber waste. The solution evolved to include using recycled plastic bottles as raw material for fiber, with the option to add performance capabilities such as moisture-wicking and odour control.

Along with keeping the plastics out of landfills and giving them new life, Repreve production uses less energy and water and produces fewer greenhouse gas emissions compared with manufacturing virgin synthetic fibers.

The milestone is the equivalent of keeping 156 plastic bottles per U.S. household out of the landfill and transforming them into the sustainable fabric using Repreve fibres, which are used in apparel, home goods, automotive and industrial applications.

“Sustainability and recycling are key priorities for Unifi,” said Tom Caudle, president and chief operating officer, “and we are proud to lead by example as we continue to drive awareness of the importance of recycling. Consumer demand for more sustainable products will continue to drive demand for Repreve from our brand, retail and mill partners, and that will help us reach our goal of transforming 30 billion bottles in 2022.”

 

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