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The sustainability challenges of the textile value chain are predicted to continue to increase over time, with demand predicted to grow to $2 trillion by 2027, with 63 per cent of the increase in demand over the next decade coming from emerging markets. A large part of this significant consumption will come from the approximately 2-3 billion new middle-class consumers expected by 2050 from markets including China, India and the Middle East. However, there are also signs of market shifts, with young ‘Generation Z’ consumers driving a shift towards resale markets, which are expected to grow 11 times faster than conventional selling models by 2025, attracting 118.8 million sellers.

By 2030, it is projected that the resale, rental, repair and remaking market could grow to from 3 per cent in 2021 ($73 billion) to 23 per cent of the total textiles industry (or $700 billion) by 2030, with resale composing 69 per cent of this economic value generated. In another study, 60 per cent of the top 50 global brands and retailers surveyed have offered (or are open to offering) second-hand items to their consumers. Transforming the textile value chain to become circular is a unique opportunity to solve the three environmental crises of our time of climate change, biodiversity loss and pollution. Many initiatives and Cross-industry platforms are working to reduce these impacts. From raw material cultivation to end-of-life waste, every stakeholder in the interconnected textiles global value chain can contribute sustainability solutions at every stage. However, even accounting for existing goals and work, the fashion industry is calculated to miss the 1.5°C pathway outlined in the Paris Agreement by 50 percent 25 and it is estimated that additional investments of $20–30 billion per year will be needed to pivot the textile value chain towards more sustainable pathways. (full report)

Statista (2022) Revenue of the apparel market worldwide from 2014 to 2027.

McKinsey (2020). Biodiversity: The next frontier in sustainable fashion.

Fashion Revolution (2020). Why We Still Need a Fashion Revolution. thredUP (2021).

Fashion Resale Market Report 2021.

GlobalData Fashion Retailer Survey: 50 US fashion

(apparel, accessories, footwear) retailers were surveyed in March and April

2021 about their Circular Fashion goals.

McKinsey and GFA (2020). Fashion on Climate.

Fashion for Good and BCG (2020). Financing the Transformation in Fashion.

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