Making Finnish supermarkets ‘greener’ with the reusable shopping bag made from recycled fibres

REMO Bags Project

Reusable shopping bags

Carrington Textiles and Finnish textile rental service Lindström have joined forces to run a project of reusable shopping bags aiming to reduce the number of plastic used in supermarkets.

The REMO Bags Project was developed in 2018 as part of a commitment from both companies to reduce the amount of textile product being landfilled. According to the European Commission the EU textile industry generates waste estimated at 16 million tons per year. Much of this waste is thrown in landfills or incinerated, with a high environmental impact and at great cost.

The scheme recycles Lindström’s old garments into Carrington Textiles’s Arden 260 which is then used to make reusable shopping bags. The bags can be ‘rented’ in the supermarkets supporting the project and swapped for a new clean one when it needs washing or repairing. This way the product can continue its life cycle and avoid being wasted.

Arden 260 is part of Carrington Textiles’ new Balance Range, a choice of eco-friendly fabrics based on greener and more advanced technologies, based on recycled materials and sustainable sources.

Key drivers for this ground breaking service have been the shift in the consumers’ mindset towards renting over buying and caring for the planet through more effective usage of natural resources. The REMO bag project is a step towards an effective circular economy and repurpose of textile waste.

The name ‘REMO’ originates from the REMO Key Recycle Movement, a unique and independent guarantee of recycled content in the end product providing exact information about the item’s origin, footprint calculations and the precise percentage of its recycled content.

Jonathan McKendry, Sales Manager at Carrington Textiles said: ‘We are taking our commitment to the environment very seriously, and being able to join efforts with our customers for sustainable projects like this needs to be replicated more and more in our industry to lessen our impact on the planet.’

The REMO Bag project has been running for two years now in Finland and it has placed thousands of the sustainable bags in over 20 stores across the Baltic country.

Lindström Product Manager, Elina Harjanne, said: “We are excited to run this project alongside Carrington Textiles. We are always looking for innovative and more sustainable solutions for our operations, and the REMO bag is a great example of taking one step towards a full circular journey of textiles.”

According to Lindström, this forward thinking initiative has managed to save the use of around two million plastic bags, estimating to increase this number to around seven million this year.

Carrington Textiles and the Environment

High environmental standards provide the foundations which are essential for long term growth.

Our commitment to reducing our impact on the environment plays a major part in the way we develop and operate our business.

We firmly believe that good environmental performance and efficient use of resources make for a better business.

We recognise the benefits for all of integrating environmental strategy into our business, we do this by:

  • Measuring, reviewing and continuously improving the environmental impacts of our operations
  • Using resources efficiently and minimising waste wherever possible
  • Eco-innovating our production processes and products
  • Working with our suppliers, customers and employees to promote good environmental practice

Energy Saving

Installation of one of industries largest heat recovery systems, recovering waste heat from waste water and atmospheric releases to heat clean process water.

Annual saving of natural gas of > 750000 cubic metres

Reducing CO2 emissions by more than 4000 tonnes per year

Water Use

Water for all wet processes has been reduced to well below industry benchmarks by investing in the best available equipment, use of greener chemistry and ‘smart’ use of water.

Reducing effluent production by more than 50,000 m3 per year

Resource Efficiency

By investing in chemical recovery systems, chemical substitution and process optimisation we have realised significant reductions in the use of products.

Chemical consumption reduced by more than 100000 tonnes per year

Waste Minimisation

Our purchasing policy means that waste is kept to a minimum and where possible all remaining packaging is re-used or recycled, these ideals are passed onto our supply chain. As a result of these measures significant amounts of waste have diverted from landfill.

Marketing Materials

All our marketing materials are now fully sustainable. We use the FSC standard for our printed materials, which supports the promotion of products produced from well-managed forests and/or recycled materials. Our clear plastic water bottles are made from recycled material and encourage our team to use less single-use plastic bottles.