The EU Strategy for Sustainable and Circular Textiles

The textile service industry – part of a more sustainable textile industry

The global textile industry is facing a change. Today, 11 kg of textiles are thrown away per year per European. Textile consumption is the fourth most climate-impacting part of Europeans’ consumption after food, housing, and transport, and globally textile production ranks third in terms of water and land use. It is high time to realize that Fast Fashion is Out of Fashion!

We in the textile service industry realized this a long time ago. Our business model is based on circular principles where high-quality textiles are used again and again, after gentle washing and resource-saving repairs.

Joint approach to future-proof the industry

The textile service industry consists of approximately 550 companies with a total of nearly 8,500 employees in Sweden and Denmark, who are represented by the interest organizations The Swedish Textile Service Association and the Brancheforeningen for Vask og Tekstiludlejning. For decades, our members have streamlined processes to conserve resources and contribute to creating green and inclusive jobs.

By developing the authorization processes for our member companies, we can not only ensure that our members always deliver high quality to their customers, but are also future-proofed based on a clearly increased focus on sustainability issues in the textile industry.

EU strategy for sustainable and circular textiles

In March 2020, the EU launched a strategy for sustainable and circular textiles with the ambition that:

“All textiles manufactured or placed on the European market must have a long life, be repairable, recyclable, free from harmful chemicals, largely based on recycled materials, and produced in a socially sustainable way.”

The strategy is based on several different changes in the law, which together should steer towards this goal.

The most important elements of the strategy are:

  • Increase incentives for circular business models – including textile reuse and repairs.
  • Designing textiles that make them last longer, be easy to mend, and recycle.
  • Minimum levels of percentage of recycled material in textiles.
  • Create digital passports to control textile flows and facilitate traceability and recycling.
  • Reduce overproduction and overconsumption by discouraging the destruction of unsold/returned textiles.
  • Establish producer responsibility for textiles.
  • Tighten up exports of textile waste outside the Union.
  • Reduce emissions of microplastics from textiles into the environment.
  • Work for increased transparency and social sustainability in the textile value chain (Due Diligence).
  • The EU’s strategy for sustainable and circular textiles will, together with the development of chemical legislation and continued resource efficiency, form the basis for the development of the authorization process going forward.

Read more about the EU’s strategy for sustainable and circular textiles:

Textiles strategy (

EU strategy for sustainable and circular textiles (