How many T-shirts are sold each year

Record for textile waste : Every German throws away 4.7 kilograms of clothing every year

Germany produces 391,752 tons of textile waste annually. Only Italy produces more waste of this type, with 465,925 tonnes in total. This is the result of a study carried out by the ABCD agency on behalf of the Labfresh brand. The aim of the study was to show how much clothing ends up in the garbage every year - and which country is particularly wasteful.

Calculated per capita, Germany is in the middle here. With 4.7 kilograms of clothes that every German throws away on average each year, the Federal Republic ranks seventh among the 15 largest textile wasters in Europe. At the top is Belgium, where 14.8 kilograms of textiles per inhabitant end up in the trash. It is followed by the Czech Republic with 10.2 kilograms. Accordingly, people in Spain are more sustainable with their clothes; every citizen there produces an average of only 2.1 kilograms of textile waste per year.

H&M and Co. advertise recycling

Sustainability has also become a major issue in the fashion industry in recent years. Almost every large chain now has a permanent collection in its range that should be produced in an ecologically fair manner. Many companies are also starting to recycle clothing. For example, C&A with #WearTheChange or H&M with the so-called Conscious Collection, which, according to advertising, should help "close the circle of fashion". However, critics accuse the brands of often using environmentally harmful chemicals when recycling, and criticize that advertising with sustainability without legal protection of the term is very susceptible to green washing.

And although it sounds completely different with the big fashion chains, according to the current study only a small part of the disposed textiles is recycled. Ten percent of all textile waste continues to be used on the market as used clothing, eight percent can be returned to the production cycle through recycling. But the rest will simply be disposed of.

Germans spend 910 euros on clothes

"Almost a quarter (24.3 percent) of all textile waste is burned in a CO²-intensive manner," according to the study. "More than half of the clothes waste (57.1 percent) ends up in the particularly environmentally harmful landfills." In Germany, according to the study, only 500 grams of the 4.7 kilograms of garbage are recycled per capita.

The Germans spend a lot of money on fashion. According to the study, every German buys new clothes for 910 euros every year. That means seventh place of the considered nations. Accordingly, fashion is worth the most money to people in Austria (1270 euros), Great Britain (1150 euros) and Italy (1080 euros). The research is based on the latest available data (2016) from the Statistical Office of the European Union (Eurostat).

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