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2017 Sustainability Report
published 2018/08/01

Initiative against Micro-plastic Release in Environment

September 21, 2017 – The “TextileMission” Joint Project started with the participation of VAUDE on 1 September. The project aims to reduce the micro-plastic particles release, which originate from man-made synthetic fibres.

Project focus: textile production and wastewater treatment technology

TextileMission follows an interdisciplinary research approach dedicated to two priorities.

On one hand, textiles and clothing are to be developed, using optimized production processes and researches, for significant lower quantities of micro-particles release in comparison with the available products on the market. Together with the sports clothing manufacturers involved, the textile researchers will testify the feasibility of using biodegradable fibres as an environmental friendly alternative.

On the other hand, the project partners will contribute in optimizing the wastewater treatment technology for phasing out maximum amount of particles. This will also enhance as well the reduction of micro-plastics from non-textile sources.

»VAUDE is passionate about pursuing innovation and sustainable solutions, forging a trail that will make a positive impact. Within the scope of this project, we are working together with our partners in the research network to tackle the problem of microparticles head on – starting with the materials and textile technologies that we use for our products. We want to make our products even more environmentally friendly and are eager to integrate the findings into our product development.«

Hilke Patzwall, Senior CSR Manager at VAUDE

The “TextileMission” project is funded with a budget of 1.7 million Euros by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) under the “Plastic in the environment – sources, reduction, possible solutions” funding priority program.


As project partners, the following organisations from industry, the academy and civil society will jointly contribute their specific expertise:


  • adidas AG,
  • Bundesverband der Deutschen Sportartikel-Industrie e.V. (National Association of the German Sporting Goods Industry, BSI) as the project coordinator,
  • Henkel AG & Co. KG,
  • Hochschule Niederrhein - Faculty of Textile and Clothing Technology,
  • Miele & Cie. KG,
  • Polartec LLC,
  • TU Dresden – Faculty of Environmental Sciences,
  • VAUDE Sport GmbH & Co. KG
  • and WWF Germany.
 
 

The background:

Textiles as one of many sources...

Micro-plastic particles are released into rivers, lakes and oceans from a variety of sources, and can endanger living organisms. They originate from tyres wearing out, paint particles, disintegration of packaging materials, and also from household washing. The reason: a major part of our clothing is made from synthetic fibres releasing micro-plastic particles during the washing process, particularly fleece materials. These particles, with a diameter of less than 5 mm, are only partially filtered out by modern wastewater treatment systems and thus get into the environment. The project partners are looking forward to an exciting project and warmly invite all interested parties from the economic sectors and scientific disciplines relevant to the project “TextileMission” to provide input and to participate in various workshops and symposiums to be organized in the framework of the three years project.

Copyright for the cover photo on this page: © Cristian Alvarez