Forty-nine percent are not aware that extending the life of a garment lessens its environmental impact
BELLEVUE, Wash., June 6, 2018 /CNW/ -- Value Village™, a global purpose-driven thrift retailer, launched its third annual State of Reuse Report today. Findings from this year's report reveal there is a continued need for consumers to embrace the full cycle of reuse – not only the act of donating goods no longer in use, but also shopping for pre-owned or upcycled products to reduce their overall clothing footprint.
The environmental impact of an item's journey from production to store racks and shelves continues to go unnoticed as consumers race to buy now and buy more. While promising trends toward responsible decluttering are on the rise, 26 billion pounds of clothing and textiles still pile up in landfills each year – 95 percent of which could be reused or recycled.
"Value Village is dedicated to helping people extend the life of goods," said Tony Shumpert, Vice President of Recycling and Reuse for Value Village. "This year's report shows a real opportunity to educate shoppers on the powerful impact they can have on the environment and their communities simply by embracing reuse and more sustainable buying and purchasing habits."
Value Village commissioned the 2018 State of Reuse Report to continue its commitment to understanding how it can help consumers bring the cycle of reuse full circle. This year's report illustrates key motivators for reuse as well as the opportunity to further education on the impact of clothing waste.
Key Findings from the State of Reuse Report:
Decluttering as a primary driver for reuse.
Fifty-three percent of North Americans donate clothing and household goods when they feel they have accumulated too much clutter. Physical reminders, such as running out of closet space, also tend to inspire action.
When people don't donate, they are still finding other ways to extend the life of their used goods:
32 percent give their friends and family first pick of their unwanted items
13 percent sell them via consignment or online marketplaces
People are missing out on the full cycle of reuse.
While more people are donating or finding other uses for unwanted items, only 40 percent purchase pre-owned goods at least once every few months, and 60 percent of North Americans are shopping thrift once a year or less.
Shoppers seek savings and treasures.
Fifty-seven percent of respondents buy pre-owned goods to save money and 69 percent say buying used goods feels like finding hidden treasure. Seventy-seven percent have even been surprised by the great pre-owned items they've found.
Closing the loop will require continued consumer education.
Almost half (49 percent) of respondents did not know that extending the life of a garment reduces its environmental footprint.
Nearly 2 in 3 (64 percent) thought it only took two years for a synthetic t-shirt to decompose, when in reality, textile decomposition takes over 40 years.
For more people to bring reuse full circle, more convenient solutions are needed. Examples:
More convenient donation locations: Over 80 percent will drive 15 minutes or less to donate or recycle their unwanted stuff.
More organized thrift experience: Fifty-three percent don't like to dig through piles to find something they like while shopping.
About Value Village™ Value Village is a for-profit global thrift retailer offering clothing and accessories for men, women and children and household goods. Through its unique business model of purchasing, reselling and recycling secondhand merchandise, the Value Village family of thrift stores give local consumers a smart way to shop and save more than 700 million pounds of quality used goods from landfills each year. Value Village operates over 300 locations and has over 20,000 employees in Canada, the United States and Australia. For more information, please visit https://www.valuevillage.com/.
SOURCE Value Village
For further information: Savers' Director of Communications, Sara Gaugl, [email protected], http://www.valuevillage.com