Explained: circular production

Erklärt: Zirkuläre Produktion

Circular production in the textile industry means that the production, use and recycling of textiles takes place in a closed loop, minimizing waste and environmental impact. The idea behind it is to create a sustainable and environmentally friendly alternative to linear production, where resources are extracted, products are manufactured and then disposed of. In circular production, textiles are designed, used and reprocessed in such a way that they can be continuously returned to the production cycle. This approach can be implemented in different phases:

  1. Design : From the beginning, textiles are designed to be durable, repairable and easy to recycle at the end of their useful life. This could be achieved by using mono materials or easily separable materials.

  2. Production : Manufacturing uses environmentally friendly materials and techniques that reduce the consumption of water, energy and chemicals. For example, fabrics made from recycled fibers or bio-based materials could be used.

  3. Usage : The consumer is encouraged to use textiles for longer, repair them, pass them on or share them instead of throwing them away.

  4. Take-back and recycling : At the end of their useful life, textiles are taken back to either repair, upcycle or recycle. This could be achieved through take-back systems, repair workshops or special recycling processes.

  5. Reintroduction : The recycled fibers and materials are then fed back into the production process to create new textiles.

  6. Business models : Companies could introduce business models such as leasing, renting or sharing, where consumers only use clothing or textiles for a certain period of time before they are returned and renewed or reused.

Advantages of circular production in the textile industry:

  • Resource efficiency : Reduced need for raw materials and energy.
  • Waste reduction : Less waste ends up in landfills or is incinerated.
  • Extended product life cycle : Products last longer and have greater added value over their entire lifespan.


  • There can be technological challenges in remanufacturing and recycling textiles.
  • A change in consumer culture is necessary to encourage longer use of products.
  • Adjustments in companies' business models and strategies are required to support the transition to circular production.

Overall, circular production in the textile industry offers a promising opportunity to reduce environmental impact while increasing economic efficiency and resilience.