Fast Retailing clothing brand Uniqlo Japan has begun recycling down extracted from donated items for use in new products.

The company announced the new initiative in a trading update yesterday. From November, Uniqlo Japan began using down extracted from quality second-hand down items brought in by customers to any Uniqlo store in the country as material for new down products.

Since September 2019, the company says it has collected around 620,000 second-hand down items under the project.

Uniqlo Japan also plans to start producing high-functioning, quick-drying Dry Ex products using recycled polyester in some of its scheduled 2020 Spring Summer ranges. "These initiatives show how we are creating new clothing value by using new technologies to encourage the reuse of resources," the company said.

The initiative follows on from Uniqlo's partnership with materials maker Toray Industries, which saw them begin producing clothing made from recycled down and fabric that contains polyester fibres from recycled plastic bottles last year.