A startup is tackling waste by making it easy for people to sell or recycle their old clothes
Spotted: The high environmental cost of fashion is becoming more and more apparent. The fashion industry generates more than 4 per cent of the world’s waste and uses a tremendous number of resources. Startup Stuffstr has been tackling the waste issue head-on, collecting unwanted apparel and accessories from consumers and sending them on to the second-hand clothing market, or for recycling, via its app.
One big difference between Stuffstr and other second-hand clothing companies is data. Stuffstr works with clothing brands to collect data on five years’ worth of products, which customers can then search, to find out what the company will pay to buy that item back.
The company collects the item from the consumer, takes it to their sorting facility and sends it on to be recycled, or sold second-hand. Stuffstr then feeds this information back to the brands, based on the condition of the returned clothes. Brands can use this information to inform future product development and fine-tune the prices they offer consumers for the used goods. The data collected can also help brands determine how the original cost, and the buy-back value, influence future purchasing decisions.
Stuffstr co-founder and CEO, John Atcheson, told Forbes that “Stuffstr’s in a unique position to be able to offer consumers an unprecedented level of transparency into what happens with their stuff – where it gets resold (and for how much), and even what happened to it if it couldn’t be resold and had to be recycled.”
As people and businesses seek new ways to reduce waste, the circular economy is becoming increasingly common. At Springwise, we have seen a variety of innovations aimed at creating circular models in different spaces. These have included riverboats powered by old EV batteries, and the growth of reverse logistics.