Image of Marisa Adler sorting textile waste and text reading A Leap Towards textile circularity


Unveiling the Sorting for Circularity USA Report

Today marks a transformative moment for the US textile industry as Fashion for Good (FFG) proudly launches the groundbreaking “Sorting for Circularity USA” report. Fashion for Good is a global innovation platform advancing textile circularity across the globe and RRS was proud to work with them on this innovative initiative that is a testament to our shared commitment to creating a more sustainable and circular future. This report is representative of the collaborative efforts happening within the textile circularity industry and has the power to inform policy and unlock investment.


 Download Sorting for Circularity USA Report


The Real Challenge and the Innovative Response

The report explores the interworking consumer disposal behavior and textile waste composition across the United States, unveiling a substantial $1.5 billion opportunity for fiber-to-fiber recycling. It also highlights the potential to divert textiles from landfills and showcases the immense capacity for industry-wide transformation. Marisa Adler, a senior consultant and the RRS lead for this ambitious project.

“This research provides defensible insight into two parts of the recovery value chain with little to no existing data: firstly, how consumers decide what to do with textiles they no longer want and secondly, the fibre composition of postconsumer textiles. With these new findings, we can enhance collection systems to capture more textiles, calculate the financial potential for textile recycling, and build supportive, data-driven policy. We are eager to continue building upon this research to advance further opportunities for textile circularity.” – Marisa Adler, RRS Senior Consultant

A Collaborative Effort with Lasting Impact

RRS’ expertise and resourcefulness played an instrumental role in this project. Our extensive experience in waste management and recycling systems was pivotal in helping FFG recruit brand

partners and onboard project advisors, ensure a collaborative and informed approach to tackling the complex issues at hand.

One of the key elements of this initiative was the meticulous selection of textile sorting facilities and collection organizations. RRS led this process, analyzing the physical flow of materials within sorting and collection centers. Our strategic planning for onsite data collection was crucial in gathering accurate and actionable insights. The data collected was then aggregated and thoroughly analyzed, culminating in the comprehensive report we celebrate today.

“We are laying the foundation towards textile circularity with this report. Through collaboration and unwavering commitment, we’ve uncovered actionable insights, revealing not just a $1.5 billion opportunity, but a practical roadmap for sustainable fashion and textiles. RRS’ role was incredibly data-driven and focused on sparking collective action to innovate how we collectively handle textiles to create lasting textile circularity.” – Marisa Adler, RRS Senior Consultant

The Roadmap to a Circular Future 

The findings of the Sorting for Circularity USA report reveal that 60% of US consumers already divert textiles through donation or resale, laying a strong foundation for a circular economy. Our research also revealed that over 56% of post-consumer textiles are suitable for recycling, with cotton and polyester leading the pack. This presents a clear pathway towards a more sustainable textile industry. 

 Investment in research and development, alongside supportive policies, will fuel the ongoing efforts for innovation in textile recycling. The report underscores the importance of exploring a demo facility for closed-loop recycling, which can serve as a springboard for national solutions. By working together, brands, government, retailers, and consumers can transform the $1.5 billion opportunity in fiber-to-fiber recycling into a reality. 


A Vision for the Future

Marisa Adler posing in a textile sorting facility surrounded by cardboard boxes

The Sorting for Circularity USA report offers more than just data; it provides a visionary roadmap for positive change. With the collaborative spirit and passion demonstrated by all partners, especially the meticulous efforts of FFG and RRS, we are on the brink of a significant shift towards a more sustainable and circular textile industry. 

As we move forward, the insights gained from this project will guide us in enhancing collection systems, calculating financial potential, and building supportive, data-driven policies. This is just the beginning of a journey towards a circular economy, where innovation, collaboration, and unwavering commitment will lead the way.  

Join us in celebrating this milestone and embracing the exciting future of textile circularity. Together, we can make a lasting impact on our industry and the world. 


Related Report

The growth of textile waste in the United States is outpacing the growth of every other major category of waste. RRS’ Textile Recovery in the U.S. report evaluates the current state of textile waste in the U.S. waste stream and explores a future-state system in which textiles are maintained in best and highest use throughout the value chain.

 Download RRS Textile Recovery in the U.S. Report