ArrowArtboardCreated with Sketch.Title ChevronTitle ChevronEye IconIcon FacebookIcon LinkedinIcon Mail ContactPath LayerIcon MailMenu BurgerPositive ArrowIcon PrintIcon SearchSite TitleTitle ChevronIcon Twitter
Environment

Marubeni teams with US startup to recycle fiber for clothing

Japanese trading house pursues Earth-friendly apparel with Tyton investment

Polyester yarn is produced at a factory in Belarus.   © Reuters

TOKYO -- Marubeni plans to manufacture clothing made from recycled materials starting next year, tapping the fiber-recycling technologies of an American startup that it is poised to invest in.

The Japanese trading house will take a roughly 1 billion yen ($9.4 million) interest in Virginia-based Tyton BioSciences, which has developed a way to recycle polyester and poly-cotton blends into the building blocks of polyester.

Amid growing interest in environmental, social and governance investment principles, major apparel makers are expanding offerings of eco-friendly products. Development of green materials is becoming more important for trading houses that provide clothing under manufacturing contracts.

Tyton aims to begin commercial production of recycled fiber sometime in 2020, with Marubeni planning to use the materials.

Fellow Japanese trading house Itochu began recommending materials made from recycled polyester to apparel companies in June, and these are expected to be adopted next spring. The company has been developing eco-friendly materials, having decided in 2018 to build a pilot plant for recycled fiber with a Finnish partner.

Fast Retailing, the Japanese company behind the Uniqlo casualwear brand, and Zara owner Inditex of Spain have pushed for the use of Earth-friendly shopping bags and packaging. Now the green movement is reaching clothing materials.

Sponsored Content

About Sponsored Content This content was commissioned by Nikkei's Global Business Bureau.

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this monthThis is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia;
the most dynamic market in the world.

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia

Get trusted insights from experts within Asia itself.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Get Unlimited access

You have {{numberArticlesLeft}} free article{{numberArticlesLeft-plural}} left this month

This is your last free article this month

Stay ahead with our exclusives on Asia; the most
dynamic market in the world
.

Get trusted insights from experts
within Asia itself.

Try 3 months for $9

Offer ends June 30th

Your trial period has expired

You need a subscription to...

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers and subscribe

Your full access to the Nikkei Asian Review has expired

You need a subscription to:

  • Read all stories with unlimited access
  • Use our mobile and tablet apps
See all offers
NAR on print phone, device, and tablet media