Made from Recycled Plastic Bottles <br> Giving New Purpose to Plastic Waste
Words by Alexia Jacquot
Photography by Celia Spenard-Ko & Courtesy of Comertex
1 Bassi Market Tote takes 3.5 pounds of PET plastic off the landfill
Made from recycled PET plastic — PET, or polyethylene terephthalate, is the plastic commonly used to make single-use water bottles — rPET is a fabric that’s resistant, soft to the touch, and more importantly, kind to our planet. Also known as recycled polyester, this is a material of choice for GOODEE’s new Bassi Market Tote in solid colors.
Why choose rPET?
We hold ourselves and our suppliers to the highest standards when selecting materials for our designs and we are continuously working towards ways we can reduce our impact on the planet to the greatest extent possible. Right now, only 9% of all plastic waste ever produced is recycled, and the rest takes centuries to break down, ending up as litter in the environment with devastating consequences for the oceans and the life within them. Our planet is literally overflowing with plastic with approximately 22 million kilograms dumped into our oceans daily. Turning recyclable plastic into fabric is one way to minimize waste. It also reduces our dependence on fossil fuels by reusing materials already in existence. So choosing recycled PET makes sense from an environmental perspective.
How is it made?
The rPET fabric we use is made from recycled PET bottles sourced in Central and Eastern Europe. Once collected, sorted, and cleaned, the plastic is shredded into small chips, which are melted and spun into yarn-like fiber in a specialized plant in Italy. The yarn is then dyed — using earth-friendly dyes — and woven in Spain by our environmentally-conscious supplier, Comertex.
How sustainable is it really?
The environmental impact of producing rPET is much lower than it is for virgin polyester, which is derived from petroleum: It uses between 30 and 50% less energy according to Textile Exchange (Preferred Fibres Report, 2017), fewer natural resources, and reduces greenhouse gas emissions. What’s more, rPET can potentially be recycled over and over again with almost no degradation of quality.
Is the process fully traceable?
Yes, it is 100% traceable and transparent. Every step of the journey from recycling the PET bottles to supplying the fabric is audited by the Global Recycled Standard (GRS), a leading standard for recycled materials led by Textile Exchange. The GRS certification not only verifies the amount of recycled materials in the fabric, but it also guarantees ethical working conditions and a reduced environmental impact throughout the production process.
How to care for rPET?
If you need to wash rPET, always choose a colder, shorter cycle. The fabric will shed microplastic fibers with every wash, so we strongly recommend reducing the number of washes to a strict minimum. There are also ways to capture those microfibers during washes, for instance by using special laundry bags, laundry balls, or filters.