We know that fashion is currently the second biggest contributor to the world's pollution and as the second largest clothing retailer in the UK, we at George know we need to do all we can to help reduce our impact.
We are really excited for the changes that we are making to the way we source and make our clothing which we believe will make a huge difference to our carbon footprint.
As part of that commitment to change, we are signatories to WRAP’s Textile 2030 initiative, a voluntary agreement made by a number of retailers that will see the environmental impact of UK clothing and home fabrics slashed through practical interventions along the entire textiles chain.
An important part of that is creating a more circular textiles industry, which is highlighted during Textiles Action Week, a week of action to celebrate progress made in fashion and textiles, presenting an opportunity to champion the need for change.
It is really important to us that we play our part in preventing perfectly good clothing for ending up in landfill. £140m of clothing goes to landfill each year, which creates harmful greenhouse gases.
We realise there is still plenty to be done, but we are proud of the steps we have taken so far, working with our customers to make it is as easy as possible to also help them make a difference.
Last year, for the first time, we sold second-hand clothing in our stores after partnering with Preloved, adapting the ‘kilo sale’ to work in our stores. It proved really popular with environmentally conscious customers keen to get their hands on some vintage clothes and we have now Preloved in 50 stores across the country.
So far over 11,500 garments have found a new home instead of ending up in landfill and that number is only set to increase, with the plan to open Preloved into up to 200 of our stores.
Earlier this year we launched ‘George Take back’ a scheme which supports customers to recycle their unwanted clothes and textiles with ease.
Customers receive a 10% off voucher for George.com when they pack up their old and unwanted clothes, returning them to one of the retailers participating stores. We have had over 2,000 customers register so far, which has led to 2.5 tonnes of unwanted clothes being prevented from landfill. Those clothes have also made a real difference to our charity partners Breast Cancer Now and CoppaFeel!
For a number of years, we have also helped the Salvation Army, Tickled Pink and Children in Need through our clothing banks in our car parks which has meant that a whopping 65,583 tonnes of clothing has gone to good causes, worth over £18m.
These are really exciting steps we are taking which are already making a difference and we know that by continuing to work with like-minded businesses and our customers we can do even more.