The Royal Robbins store in Berkeley is proving to be a shining example of what a clothing recycling program is capable of accomplishing, says the company. The program encourages consumers to buy high quality, durable clothing made to last while recycling old product.
Since inception of the Royal Robbin Clothing Recycling Initiative in July, the Berkeley store alone has collected 76 cubic feet of clothing or three large refrigerators worth. There are currently two Royal’s Rewear Program bins, in Berkeley and Modesto, with plans of adding up to 25 more in 2017.
Royal’s Rewear Program combats the negligence of fast fashion, says the company. Americans are trashing more clothes than ever, throwing away 13 million tons of clothing or roughly 85 percent of their clothes each year. This accounts for about 9 percent of total non-recycled waste, according to a study by PBS.
“Americans are throwing away more clothes than ever. We are so happy our customers share our enthusiasm for this program and for environmental safekeeping,” said Tina Jayan, manager of Royal Robbins’ Berkeley store. “Berkeley customers share a deep-rooted love for the environment with Royal Robbins’ founders Royal and Liz Robbins. Thanks to this program, they are looking more carefully at their footprint as consumers.”
Clean climbing pioneers Liz and Royal Robbins built the company in 1968 upon the ethos of environmental safekeeping, which remains a pillar of the brand today. Recently, Royal Robbins became a bluesign partner, subscribing to manufacturing practices which ensure the safekeeping of natural resources and ecological surroundings.
“Environmental safekeeping is the core foundation of our brand’s heritage,” said Michael Millenacker, CEO of Royal Robbins. “We are devoted to continuing and expanding on Royal and Liz’s original vision. Royal’s Rewear Program is a tribute to our heritage with a simple ethos: recycle more and buy clothing that is built to last.”
This recycling initiative allows customers and employees to do their part and reduce the volume of waste being sent to landfills every year by sending items back or dropping them in collection bins at Royal Robbins stores. All apparel brands will be eligible for recycling through the Rewear Program. Any rewearable quality Royal Robbins apparel sent back will be re-sold at Royal Robbins retail stores in the new Royal’s Rewear department, and all other apparel received will be reused and recycled by partner, I:CO, which supports a closed loop recycling structure to eliminate waste. The recycled material will then be turned into new clothing, padding and insulation.
Participants in the Rewear Program will receive an incentive coupon towards a future Royal Robbins purchase. All program proceeds benefit the Yosemite Converancy, a non-profit that funds projects and programs essential to the preservation of Yosemite, the birthplace of the Royal Robbins brand.
The Royal Robbins Factory Store is located at 841 Gilman Street in Berkeley, Calif.