April 20, 2024
Sustainability

Lululemon Unveils Enzymatically Recycled Nylon 6.6 Apparel

US apparel brand Lululemon has partnered with Australian enviro-tech startup, Samsara Eco and unveiled the world’s first enzymatically recycled nylon 6.6 product.

“This marks a key milestone in textile-to-textile recycling and lululemon’s work to create a circular ecosystem,” Lululemon said in a press release.

Using recycled nylon 6.6 made with Samsara Eco’s technology, Lululemon has created samples of its iconic Swiftly Tech Long-Sleeve Top, representing the first time this type of nylon has been recycled in this way.

Recycled nylon is generally made from post-industrial material waste, and recycled alternatives that align with Lululemon’s product performance standards are only available in limited quantities.

Samsara Eco’s technology breaks down nylon 6.6 synthetic blends by harnessing engineered enzymes, recreating nylon 6.6 that can then be turned back into apparel.

“The Lululemon top samples represent possibilities and impact that can be achieved through collaboration and cross-industry partnership,” Yogendra Dandapure, VP, Raw Materials Innovation at Lululemon said.

“This breakthrough not only signals a turning point for sustainable innovation in apparel, but for all industries looking to shift towards more circular models,” he added.

“We look forward to continuing to work with Samsara Eco to help scale this new technology in the months and years ahead,” Dandapure noted.

Over 90 percent of the nylon used in each of the Lululemon top samples is produced using Samsara Eco’s enzymatic recycling process, and offer the same fit, feel and quality as regular Lululemon products.

“Our work with Lululemon represents a ground breaking step forward in tackling the challenge of textile waste and demonstrates the potential to create a fully circular ecosystem,” Samsara Eco CEO Paul Riley said.

“We have started with nylon 6.6, but this sets the trajectory of what’s possible for recycling across a range of industries as we continue expanding our library of plastic-eating enzymes,” he too added.

“This is an incredibly significant moment for the future of sustainable fashion and circularity,” Riley observed.

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