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ReCircled, a start-up focused on sustainable fashion, has opened factories in the US and Europe to receive and sort returned garments for fashion brands seeking to transition from a linear to circular business model.

To serve both markets, ReCircled’s new facilities in Cozad, Nebraska, and Prato, Italy, will process merchandise that has been returned, is damaged, or pre-owned. The facilities, it says, provide the infrastructure for fashion companies to move to a more sustainable way of operating. 

Through the firm’s proprietary sorting process, apparel, footwear and accessories are marked as usable or unusable.

Unusable items are typically damaged beyond repair and are sent to ReCircled’s recycling partners to be reconstituted into raw materials and new fabrics. Usable items will be cleaned using waterless, CO2 cleaning technology and any damage repaired before goods are photographed and readied for resale.

ReCircled says it will build a custom resale e-commerce site for each brand that can be integrated into the firm’s current e-commerce platform or can stand alone to list inventoried items.

According to the firm’s website, items purchased online through e-commerce are boxed and shipped directly to the customer.

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ReCircled co-founder Scott Kuhlman says: “Our proprietary process for sorting, cleaning and repairing garments and accessories, and our e-commerce platform allows brands to keep items at their highest value, a core strategy of sustainability.”