New Cotton Project Introducing: adidas AG

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The New Cotton Project is a world first bringing twelve pioneering players together to demonstrate an entirely circular model for commercial garment production.

This week we meet Dr Kate Riley, Manager Future – Technical Projects,  Nina Teufel, Innovation Manager and Sophie Jones, Assistant Designer from the adidas AG Innovation team to discuss their involvement in the project.

Please give an overview of your company and job role.

At adidas sustainability is part of our strategy. Our goal is that by 2025, nine out of ten articles will be sustainable as we expand and further innovate our 3-loop system: recycled loop made from recycled materials, circular loop made to be remade, or regenerative loop made with nature. The role of the New Cotton project team at adidas is to support the business in developing and launching apparel products made using the Infinna™ fibre.  It will be the first time a regenerated cellulose has been used in adidas apparel products which will be a contribution to theMade to be Remade circularity concept.  We will be working with all Partners in the Consortium to develop and create new materials and products using the Infinited Fibre Company materials throughout the supply chain.  Our role will be to ensure all testing and research aspects are addressed and a consumer ready product is developed.

What is your participation in the New Cotton Project?

adidas is a Consortium Partner of the New Cotton Project and Work Package leader for areas including material and product development as well as consumer launch and feedback.  We will develop and test textile materials made using the Infinited Fibre Company fibres and turn them into products available to adidas consumers.  As part of the project, the sustainability metrics will be analysed and we will be able to determine the overall environmental footprint of the products we create.

What challenges and pitfalls do you think will arise in the New Cotton Project?

When it comes to circularity, a key challenge remains the availability and consistency of feedstock raw materials.  How we collect, sort and ultimately ensure end of life textile materials make it to specific recycling processes is critical, both to the New Cotton Project and to the industry more broadly.

Where do you see the greatest opportunities in collaboration?

We have a great opportunity here with the New Cotton Project.  We are working together throughout the supply chain, bringing many different perspectives and areas of knowledge into the work which will really help create innovative materials and products to offer to the consumer.  This is a new and exciting circular material for our industry and we are extremely keen to see how we can develop and work with this new, unique fibre in the sportswear industry.

Where do you see the future of circularity in the fashion and textiles industry?

Circularity is a key driver in making the fashion and textiles industry more sustainable.  As we all drive towards a better future, circularity and the opportunities it brings will drive change on a scale we haven’t yet fully seen.  We see the Infinited Fibre Company technology being an important player in the cellulosics materials area.

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