On Earth Day, Italian luxury designer outlet Florentia Village will launch a sustainability initiative with B2B recycled polyester (rPET) specialist P.E.T. (Plastic Ecological Transformation), which will see plastic bottle waste collected from Florentia Village outlets repurposed into textiles for the fashion industry. This program will first launch in Shanghai, before gradually rolling out to all Florentia Village locations by year end. With this initiative, Florentia Village plans to collect over 1,200kg of plastic waste, equivalent to more than 60,000 plastic bottles within the first year.
Reduction through repurposing
Humans are responsible for more than 6.9 billion metric tonnes of plastic waste to date. Among this, just 9% are being recycled, with the remaining amount either ending up in incinerators or landfills , making the reduction of plastic waste a pressing concern worldwide. In response to Earth Day 2021 and its mission to Restore Our Earth™, finding ways to effectively deal with plastic waste is one way in which businesses and everyday people can help support the cause. In addition to utilising reusable materials or biodegradable alternatives to plastics, increasing the recycling rate of waste plastics by improving the collection process itself is another effective step in curbing plastic waste.
As a key initiative in the implementation of its sustainability promise, in the build-up to Earth Day 2021, Florentia Village has teamed up with P.E.T. to introduce an end-to-end, traceable plastic bottle recycling program. The program will begin in Florentia Village Shanghai before extending to Florentia Village’s other six outlets in Mainland China. By collecting waste plastic and processing it into recycled polyeurethane pellets and yarn, plastic waste can be transformed into reusable items such as canvas bags, umbrellas, clothing and other merchandises offering a more sustainable option for the fashion industry. From April 22 to May 5, shoppers at Florentia Village Shanghai can drop off a plastic bottle at any of the outlet’s designated recycling points and immediately start following its journey from waste to wear by scanning the QR code on the recycle box. As an incentive, Florentia Village will reward a shopping voucher or eco-friendly gift for each shopper purchasing in the program. In addition, shoppers who meet the spending requirement can receive a limited edition fashion accessory made from recycled PET materials.
As a pioneer in sustainability, P.E.T. shares the same belief as Florentia Village in its goal to make fashion more sustainable. Through this partnership, the two companies hope to boost the development of sustainable fashion and spread awareness of the concept among consumers. P.E.T.’s mission is to create a fully traceable system for recycling and repurposing 100% locally-sourced plastic, allowing consumers to follow the journey of each plastic bottle as it is transformed from plastic waste into an item of clothing or a fashion accessory. According to its own estimates, P.E.T. repurposed over 190,000 plastic bottles in 2019, resulting in a reduction of 18,525kg in carbon emissions, roughly equivalent to planting 3,800 trees.
Building a path towards sustainable fashion
Improving its impact on the environment has long been a part of Florentia Village’s CSR Program. In 2019, the company introduced sustainable packaging options on its ecommerce platform FVshop.com, giving consumers the choice to opt for reused packaging when ordering online. The recently-opened Florentia Village Chongqing has also taken steps towards greater environmental sustainability by using the same material used in the construction of the Beijing Water Cube as the material for the canopy that covers large sections of the outlet. This material lets significantly more natural light into the space, allowing for large energy savings and decreased carbon emissions, while at the same time maintaining Florentia Village’s architectural style. This same design will also be used in the Florentia Village Shanghai Phase II project later this year.
As a much-need step in the reduction of the world’s ecological deficit and the development towards greater industrial sustainability, sustainable fashion has in itself become a key driver of economic growth and industrial transformation. Starting with the bottle repurposing initiative, Florentia Village will continue to develop its Italian-style approach to this cause, incorporating sustainability into its daily operations and marketing activities and making use of more environmentally friendly or recycled materials. As it continues to work hard to bring consumers an immersive, one-stop Italian shopping experience, Florentia Village will also take further steps to improve its impact on the environment, making its own contributions to Restore Our Earth.