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Sustainable Fashion On The Chinese Agenda

When it comes to sustainability, China has historically been a laggard. The country is well known as the largest emitter of CO2, and rivers such as the Yangzte are main sources of ocean plastics. But things are changing: The Chinese government has set ambitious targets for carbon emission reductions, introduced heavy fines for pollution, and implemented household waste sorting in cities such as Shanghai. The Chinese consumers are now also seeking ways to live more sustainably, and they are welcoming sustainable products to the market.
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May 19, 2021
Sustainable Fashion China

READY FOR NEW MARKET

At Waste2Wear we find ourselves in the middle of this exciting development. China is the largest producer of textiles and apparel globally, and our founder Monique Maissan came to Shanghai with the textile industry more than 20 years ago.  Our head office is in Shanghai, but until recently our customers have been international. This is definitively set to change now. We are very excited about the recent interest in our work from Chinese brands and interest groups. Our the recent months, Waste2Wear has been invited to a number of events to discuss sustainable fashion in Chaina. Sustainability was also one of the key topics at this years Shanghai Fashion week.

FUTURE TALKS BEIJING

On May 13th we were represented at the Future Talks hosted by the five Nordic Embassies in Beijing. The event brought together people from both the textile and fashion industry, as well as a large number of young professionals and students who are looking for ways to lead more sustainable lifestyles. Our CMO took part in a panel discussion with Zhang Na, founder of the brand Fake Natoo and the Reclothing Bank. She shared her experiences of turning old styles into new catwalk ready pieces. The moderator for our session was Hung Huang, often referred to as “the Oprah of China”, and she was particularly interested in understanding how RPET production can scale and become economically sustainable.
From the questions from the audience, it was clear that China is ready to move towards a more sustainable fashion industry, but that the knowledge about recycled materials is not as high as many places in for example Europe. Many of the younger audience asked about the quality: Can textile made from recycled bottles reach the same quailty as virgin polyester? They also asked if it is safe to wear.

HAPPY TO HELP WITH OUR KNOWLEDGE AND EXPERIENCE

With our long experience in the market, we were very happy to use Waste2Wear and our products as an example of both the possibility to scale the business in a profitable way, and proven high quality and standards over long time.
Another question many asked was where they can buy our clothes. We were happy to refer to the innovative brand Zurita  that uses Waste2Wear materials in their new spring/summer collection which is available across China. There was a clothes swap organised at the mingling event, and we were happy to see the Waste2Wear samples very quickly being taken off the racks.

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Sven Bleekemolen

Sven Bleekemolen is a Dutch entrepreneur and textile engineer. He is a versatile executive with a broad skill set and experience in a global marketplace. Lived and worked in Europe, Indonesia, and Turkey. Solid expertise in management of start-up to mature fashion companies in competitive wholesale and retail markets.

In his role as director of several companies, Sven built strong knowledge of international wholesale, retail, B2B sales, production and brand development. He has a strategic and innovative mindset, always focused on business development. He has a record of identifying opportunities and leading diverse teams to surpass revenue goals.

Sven has a strong focus on sustainability and is excited to discover the possibilities that lie in Waste2Wear’s groundbreaking material and blockchain technologies. He is committed to creating a major contribution to the business performance of Waste2Wear along with the transition to a more circular economy for a better outcome of the world.

Hein Barnhoorn

Olivier van Migem

Ruma Kinger

Rena Jiang

Rena Jiang has over 20 years experience in the textile industry. Knowing how polluting the industry is, Rena is proud to be making a positive impact by doing the right thing with Waste2Wear.

Christophe Marze

Christophe Marze has over 15 years specializing in structuring and powering up businesses in Asia. As a French national, he has spent many years living and working in Germany and in China. Christophe is passionate about continuous improvement, sustainability and compliance which are from him the pillars of a healthy business drive.

Jeroen van der Wind

Jeroen van der Wind is an entrepreneur, specializing in international trade within the textile and promotional industries in South East Asia for over three decades. He was managing partner of The Cookie Company for many years, producing licensed kids apparel for several multinational customers. In combination with a healthy business drive, he is determined to help further the Waste2Wear mission of relieving the planet of the plastic problem to create a better world, especially for his four adult children.

Eduardo Garza Garcia

Eduardo Garza Garcia is a Mexican designer and entrepreneur specializing in sustainable solutions for plastics. He has been pivotal in innovations including the industry-first recycled polypropylene (RPP) from discarded domestic appliances; a unique RPET verification method (RA-3) proving the recycled plastic content in materials and the industry-first blockchain technology. Thanks to his innovations, Waste2Wear has won several prestigious environmental awards. Eduardo is truly an innovator in the world of recycled plastics constantly working for new ways to bring more transparency to the recycling industry.

Stefan Kleijkamp

Stefan Kleijkamp is a highly experienced Global Quality and Compliance Manager with over 15 years of experience in the industry. Originally from the Netherlands, Stefan has spent the last two decades working in Asia, with 17 of those years in China. He is fluent in Chinese and has worked with a wide range of product groups including textile, apparel, hard goods and plastics. Throughout his career, Stefan has held positions in quality and compliance management for both large and medium sized companies, as well as in purchasing and logistics. His extensive experience has given him a deep understanding of the challenges and issues facing the industry, particularly in relation to traceability of recycled materials such as textile, cotton and polyester. With his expertise in quality and compliance, Stefan is dedicated to ensuring that the products and services provided by Waste2Wear meet the highest standards in quality, sustainability and environmental responsibility.

Monique Maissan

Monique Maissan is a Dutch entrepreneur and textile engineer specializing in sustainable solutions for the industry. As CEO and founder of Waste2Wear, she leads a committed team in creating products and services for a better future. Her vision has driven the company to produce fabrics and products made from recycled plastic bottles (RPET) and recycled polypropylene (RPP) plus award winning blockchain and RPET verification test RA-3.

Monique has won several industry awards, most recently:

Finalist of “Future Leader” World Sustainability Awards 2022;
“Outstanding Achiever” of Global Green Economic Forum, Women Eco Game Changer Awards 2022;
“Woman Leader in Plastic Recycling” Plastic Recycling Conference Asia** 2022;
“The Sustainable Entrepreneur of the Year” of Entrepreneurs’ Organization*** 2021.

She is constantly on the lookout for new and better ways to recycle more plastic. Monique’s drive comes from her determination to do her part to leave this world in a better place for her two adult children and all of the next generation