Denim giant G-Star Raw has joined forces with NGO Plastic Soup Foundation to tackle the issue of microfibre waste in oceans from the washing of garments. 

Machine washing of clothes is a big source of plastic pollution in the oceans. From each wash, synthetic garments shed small plastic fibres that end up in the water and pollute rivers and oceans. As a result, G-Star and Plastic Soup are calling on fashion companies, washing machine manufacturers and the textile industry to support the international Ocean Clean Wash. 

Signatories will contribute to the development of one or more innovative solutions to prevent the release of plastic fibres from garments in the future, such as fabrics that do not release microfibres or washing machine filters that capture the released fibres. 

According to European research, a fleece releases around 1m microfibres every time it is washed. 

"If you imagine that every day a couple of billion people around the world washing their clothing and that almost every item of clothing contains plastic nowadays, you can easily see why it is imperative to deal with this cause of the plastic soup immediately. G-Star is the first fashion brand that recognises and supports the need for innovation," Maria Westerbos, director of Plastic Soup Foundation.

Another G-Star initiative, Raw for the Oceans, makes denim fabric from recycled ocean plastic and the company is now starting to completely replace the 10% conventional polyester in its collection with recycled plastic. 

"We want to continue to create progress through sustainable innovation and join forces with the Plastic Soup Foundation to battle the microfibre problem," said Frouke Bruinsma, CR director of G-Star. "Only a strong alliance and dedicated stakeholders around the world can turn the tide. Everyone is welcome to join us."