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Textile Reuse And Recycling in Finland. What, When, How?

Did you know we could soon sort used textiles along with the normal waste in Finland? Subsequent to the EU waste directive mandating the member states to establish a separate collection of used textiles by the year 2025, Finland is aiming to start textile collection already by the year 2023 What does this mean and how will it happen? 

To reach this goal, Finland will have to develop a network of local textile collectors and sorting facilities, build, and test the textile processing factory, and find ways to utilise recycled textiles. In this episode of Sustainability Unwrapped, Anna Zhuravleva, Doctoral student at Hanken School of Economics at the HUMLOG Institute, gets together with Emppu Nurminen from Nextiili, an organisation from city of Tampere which is part of the textile collection pilot unfolding in Finland. 


Anna and Emppu walk us through all that we should know about textile reuse and recycling in Finland. They discuss the difference between reuse and recycling as the two are often used interchangeably in day-to -day language. 

”Let’s say, your jeans, when they are recycled, are broken down into cotton fiber which is collected and then used as material for something else. Reuse is when someone is using your old jeans still as jeans”, emphasises Emppu.  

The discussion then delves into the transformation that lies ahead of us in the textile industry in Finland and all the closed-loop solutions we are seeing, and will see in the future. 

Emppu also talks about the social aspect of this transformation and foresees ”this will lead to a more ecologically sustained society which will also create new recycling jobs in Finland”. 

Tune in now to explore this significant upcoming development! 

Episode notes:

CORRECTION: at 12:29: Emppu Nurminen is not leading the project on textile sorting at Nextiili. Helena Käppi is leading the project at Nextiili 

If you are interested to know more about the negative impact of the textile industry on the environment and climate, as well as the future of textile reuse in Finland and beyond, then tune in one of our previous episode!  

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