This award is new on the scene, and the first recipients were announced last year. The award was developed by the H&M foundation, a non profit global foundation, funded solely by the main owners of H&M international, namely the Stefan Persson family. The Global Change award is their newest but most prominent, as it aims to “protect the planet by making fashion circular” (Global Change, 2017).
The award is open to anyone across the globe who has an idea that is in the early stages of development and will benefit the advancement of a sustainable and restorative fashion industry. An example to explain what is meant by this concept is that unused clothes will no longer end up in a landfill but rather be recycled as a resource to be used for something else. Personally I think this is an amazing award supporting companies trying to make a difference. We are currently living on borrowed time if the fashion industry continues this way, especially with many of the fast fashion companies exploiting resources and undertaking processes which are toxic to the environment. According to the earth scientist James Conca, 10% of the world’s carbon emissions come from the fast fashion industry, which makes it the worlds second largest polluter after oil. Terrifying right?
This year’s winners were announced on the 6th of April in Stockholm and ranged from solar textiles to denim-dyed denim. I have given a brief explanation of my three favourite awardees below, but check out the website to see the amazing others and learn more.
This company has developed a technique whereby the dye from old jeans can be used to colour new products including jeans but also other garments. This will mean that the toxic and polluting process of dying can be completely eliminated.
This product is what can only be described as a digital ingredients list for clothing. By inserting these electronic developed tags on clothes, people will now better understand what their items are made of and how to best effectively recycle or dispose of them in a sustainable manner.
The traditional production of leather from animals has proven inhumane in some instances but also incredibly toxic for our environment. This company has developed a way in which we can use the natural waste from grapes to produce a vegetable leather. Traditionally the remains of the grapes after wine making would be burnt generating carbon dioxide emissions, now they can be used in this process which doesn’t generate or need any harmful toxins.
Amazing to see the fashion industry finally taking our future seriously and coming up with sustainable action plans. Greatly impressed,