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Framework for Circular Textiles

Increased resource efficiency for a sustainable industry through classification of recycled textile materials and assessment of recyclability and circularity for increased implementation of secondary raw materials in textile value chains.

The textile sector is in an intensive development phase, with clear guidelines now set via the EU's textile strategy that points out circularity and increased recycling as key areas. Several recycling technologies have come a very long way, but an obstacle to upscaling is the lack of raw material in large volumes. It is a great need of a framework for classification of textiles for recycling, the same applies to criteria for circularity and recyclability, both of these areas will be addressed in this project.

Sweden has led the way when it comes to recycling technologies, and has all the prerequisites to also take the lead when it comes to conditions for large-scale implementation.  Also Europe have a common need for solutions, and the work planned in this project therefore creates benefits far beyond Sweden's, and also the EU's, borders.

In a future textile handling system, recycled materials will be used by several different industrial sectors and actors, this can be among other industries such as the textile, automotive and furniture industries, all of which can use recycled textiles as a resource, but based on their own needs and set requirements specifications regarding the raw material. Today, there is a lack of systems for quality assurance and specification of recycled textile material, both as a direct raw material into mechanical processes and as a raw material into chemical processes.

Objectives of the project

Establishment of a framework for textile recycling as well as a framework for scientifically based assessment of the recyclability / circularity of materials and products.

The potential of the project

The type of framework that will be developed in this project is not available today and has not been the subject of previous work, despite the fact that over time it has been requested by both recycling actors and end users. The ability to guide materials the right way through the value chain is a prerequisite for achieving a high degree of circularity and achieving maximum material and energy efficiency. To give an example, a cotton material that meets all the requirements for a mechanical processing should initially take that particular path, and then in a next loop be relevant for a chemical process. Proper handling of our materials can only be achieved if we have put the right conditions in place for this to happen.

It is a National project with 19 project partners. The project partners represent the different levels of the value chain and together the group has solid knowledge in the different parts represented. Some of the actors are already involved in standardization work and have a strategic role in the project.


Project name

Framework for Circular Textiles



RISE role in project


Project start


2 years

Total budget

3 295 000 SEK


Högskolan i Borås, Wargön Innovation, Texaid, Björkå Frihet , Elis, Fenix Group, Fristads, Gina Tricot, H&M, National, Lindex, NA-KD, Säntis Textiles, Renewcell, Södra, Ted B, TEKO, TrusTrace, Tree to Textile



Project members

Supports the UN sustainability goals

12. Responsible consumption and production
Catrine Marchall

Contact person

Catrine Marchall

Senior Projektledare

+46 10 228 48 45

Read more about Catrine

Contact Catrine
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