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Recycled PET = RPET Subject to Greenwashing

Bless you Envirosax®! This is from an international company headquartered in Australia with a re-use message and philosophy. Their recent blog post, titled 100% Recycled RPET: The Facts, is extremely informative to conscious consumers.

Also see this year’s post from Patty and Leigh Anne, sister partners of O Ecotextiles, where they write about the much-needed integrity of sustainability claims.

What’s the fuss? RPET, a/k/a rPET, is currently subject to abuse. Let’s start with definitions. PET is the material most commonly used in plastic soda bottles. Recycling produces a polyester fiber. Recycled PET, which is the chemical substance Polyethylene terephthalate, is commonly known as Polyester. PET prefixing with an R means the polyester contains recycled content. The content can contain either pre-consumer (such as factory off cuts) or post-consumer waste, (such as plastic bottles).

Due to the massive demand for RPET, supply of the material from certified sources is no longer sufficient. There are now many companies in China that produce bottles for the sole purpose of recycling them immediately into so-called RPET. This is green-washing at its worst and is equivalent to consumer fraud.

From seeking a solution, Envirosax developed a partnership with Unifi Inc, USA to make its own Envirosax RPET. The blog shares their opinion that SCS Scientific Certification Systems is the only company in the world able to accurately test recycled content in material. They also share a video to illustrate how recycled polyester yarn, Repreve®, is made. Repreve® is third-party certified by SCS. RPET is a mix of 55% flat filament polyester and 45% Repreve® polyester.

Pictured first is from the Envirosax Slingsax collection to appease busy urban dwellers who need their hands free while doing other things. The Minisax is designed as a reusable lunch bag and has a nifty sack with a coffee cup holder built into the pattern.

Happy ending for good intentions here. The result is accountability for a great product. Envirosax is an ideal model company that accomplishes that goal.

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Written by Delia Montgomery

I am Delia, d/b/a Chic Eco on, and established myself as an eco fashion guru by learning "who makes what in the world of environmental fashion and design."

Enjoy reading some of my freelance writing about environmental design, fashion and art -- from both consumer and supplier perspectives. You may notice I focus most on individual eco designers, movers and shakers.

From sustainable fashion apparel to paint and flooring, discoveries are a rush. I get my kicks this way. I also offer sales representation of earth-friendly designed products for wholesale buyers. Retailers may take advantage of my services with factory-direct pricing. Spend less time sourcing and prevent green-washed purchases!

My other forte is connecting suppliers with business-to-business tools. Aspects of my business vary with consulting services while I'm proud to be the aide that embraces unique and innovative gigs.

I'm originally a Kentucky Blue Grass gal who relocated to Maui early 2006 and the tropical Puna District of Big Island, Hawaii late 2007. Walk the talk is my motto here.

Early 2009 I constructed a yurt home office in a semi-urban setting on a tiny lot. My water comes from the sky, contained in a catchment that's not likely to dry in this rain forest. The electric is designed for solar conversion. I grow about 30% of my food organically, compost, and recycle to the hilt. Permaculture with a full eco system is my gardening style.

In fact, gardening is my ultimate joy. I seek gigs like design, weeding and planting between other jobs. My love is Hawai'i which has more climate zones than any state. There are frequent earthquakes here, typically under a 3.0 magnitude, and I happen to dig the vibrations. It's a wonderful simple life in paradise. As I grow older and wiser, I become more and more grateful.

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