The urgent need for more collaboration came through loud and clear throughout the event. “In order for our planet to thrive, we must continue to address people and planet, together,” said Felicia Mayo, Chief Talent, Diversity and Culture Officer at Nike.
The Partnership vs Ownership session covered how US lifestyle brand UpWest, reuse operator ReCircled and Avery Dennison collaborated to make circularity a reality. Avery Dennison provided the digital triggers and data connectivity essential to complete the circularity loop between the retailer and the upcycler.
This session revealed how UpWest products got a second life. Shoppers who scan the QR codes on Avery Dennison’s Digital Hang Tags and Digital Care Labels were taken on a journey outlining the item’s story, care instructions and more about the UpWest brand.
Scott Kuhlman, CEO of ReCircled, spoke of how DCLs are pivotal in upcycling and recycling processes. “If we have textile information on a Digital Care Label we can make processing decisions very quickly. We know what we are dealing with, and we can embark on a much clearer, purer process for recycling.”
Robert Smith, Director of Sourcing & Production at UpWest said the strength of the collaboration has underpinned the project’s success, turning unneeded sweater stock into mittens and blankets. “Together we created something new out of existing products, but it was also about telling a story and challenging norms,” he enthused.
This UpWest and ReCircled pilot is part of Avery Dennison’s ongoing #caretobethechange collaboration program, showcasing how digitised care labels can drive forward real action on sustainability, traceability, and consumer engagement.