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February 28, 2022

YKK helps to close the loop with new recycled zippers collection

Fastening products manufacturer YKK has unveiled a new line of recycled zippers made with Econyl as trims are often labelled as being one of the biggest challenges in terms of garment recycling.

By Beth Wright

Econyl nylon, manufactured by Aquafil SpA and supplied in collaboration with Itochu Corp, is made entirely from nylon waste collected all around the world, such as industrial plastic, fabric scraps, old carpets, and fishing nets. YKK claims the material can be continuously recycled without loss of quality.

“YKK understands circular fashion as a regenerative system where garments are circulated for as long as their maximum value is retained, and then returned safely to the biosphere,” says Hitoshi Yamaguchi, president of YKK Italy. “As a small part of the supply chain, we firmly believe that circularity is the key to building sustainability. This is our motivation when we design the highest quality recycled and recyclable fastener products. Not only do we want to optimise the use of raw materials and increase the recycled content, but we also work to understand the end of life of the garments and verify the compatibility between our proposals and their subsequent recycling.

“Put simply, our products are designed with the concepts of resource efficiency, non-toxicity, biodegradability, and recyclability in mind. They are also produced giving priority to recyclable sources and ethical practices.”

YKK will offer Econyl regenerated nylon products in three categories to the European market:

  • Vislon Natulon recycled zipper made with Econyl, a fully Econyl plastic injected zipper
  • Excella Natulon recycled zipper made with Econyl, an exclusive brushed metal zipper
  • Recycled sew-on button made with Econyl, a simple button to sew on nylon garments.

YKK has expanded its Natulon recycled zippers series, which features zipper tapes made from PET bottles, old fibres, and other polyester residues. It recently introduced Natulon Plus, in which the chain and the slider are also made entirely of recycled polyester.

The new collection of recycled zippers made with Econyl regenerated nylon will be part of the YKK spring/summer 23 collection, available in Lineapelle in Milan and digitally through its dedicated microsite.

Last year, YKK launched a digital showroom to engage with its customers virtually, regardless of time or location.

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