Primark signs up to WRAP’s Textiles 2030 initiative

Primark is delighted to be a founding signatory of Textiles 2030, the UK Sustainable Textile Action Plan launched by WRAP.

Over the next decade, this important initiative aims to accelerate the fashion and textiles industry’s move towards circularity and significantly reduce the environmental impact of UK clothing and home fabrics through practical interventions along the textiles chain.

Primark was previously a member of WRAP’s Sustainable Clothing Action Plan and is pleased to have played an important collaborative role alongside WRAP, other clothing brands and partners to develop the Textiles 2030 targets as an ambitious follow-up to that original initiative.

By signing up to Textiles 2030, Primark is not only committing to taking significant action in relation to its own operations, including by encouraging its customers to use and dispose of clothing and textile products in new, more sustainable ways, but also collaborating with other signatories through cross-industry discussions to accelerate progress towards a circular economy for textiles and reverse the growing carbon impact of textile products.

Alongside other signatories, Primark will set targets for reducing whole life emissions, measure the impact of its product portfolio, and act on priorities, reporting progress to WRAP annually. Every signatory to the plan must endeavour to:

  • Reduce the aggregate greenhouse gas footprint of new products by 50%, sufficient to limit global warming to 1.5°C in line with the Paris Agreement on climate change and achieving Net Zero by 2050 at the latest
  • Reduce the aggregate water footprint of new products sold by 30%

Commenting on the initiative Katharine Stewart, Group Corporate Responsibility Director at Primark parent company Associated British Foods, said:

“We are thrilled to be an early signatory of WRAP’s Textiles 2030 plan, an initiative which is closely aligned with our own sustainability objectives and the move towards circularity in the fashion industry.

“Primark was a member of WRAP’s original Sustainable Clothing Action Plan, which has so far led to more than a 10% reduction in the three major target areas of carbon, water and waste to landfill. We are also a member of Ellen MacArthur Foundation’s Make Fashion Circular initiative, working alongside industry experts and retailers to find new ways to improve the sustainability of the garment industry.

“We’re working hard to minimise our impact on the planet from the way we source our raw materials to the way we organise our stores. In addition to our own work in this area, we strongly believe that by collaborating with others within the industry, we can make real progress in creating a circular textiles economy.”

Notes to Editors

The work of Primark’s Environmental Sustainability team covers many things; how raw materials such as cotton are sourced, the environmental impact of manufacturing processes in factories, the efficiency of Primark stores and our commitment to recycle wherever possible. Here are some of the examples of our work in this area:

  • Since 2013 we have been training farmers to grown cotton using more environmentally friendly practices, using less water, chemical pesticides and fertilisers. We significantly expanded the Primark Sustainable Cotton programme in 2019, committing to train 160,000 farmers by 2022. This is the largest independent programme of its kind managed by a fashion retailer.
  • Last year Primark signed up to the UNFCCC and supports the Charter’s net-zero ambition and is committed to a 30% reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by 2030. In joining the Charter we have committed to tackling emissions from across our entire value chain, including beyond our own operations, which make up the vast majority of our carbon footprint.
  • In July 2020, we launched our in-store recycling scheme, with collection boxes available in all stores across the UK for customers to donate their unwanted clothes, textiles, shoes and bags from any retailer. All donations will be reused, recycled or repurposed, with nothing going to landfill. Profits from the scheme go to UNICEF, Primark’s global charity partner, in support of its education programmes for vulnerable children around the world.
  • In Europe we have partnered with the charity Newlife since 2010, to donate unsold products and buying samples from our stores, to raise funds for those in need. In the US we work with the not-for-profit organisation Delivering Good. Our US stores donate unsold clothing to the organisation, which then redistributes the items to those in need around the world.
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