At Columbia, we are committed to taking a holistic, life cycle approach to managing the environmental impacts of the products we make. This includes extending the life of our products and keeping these products out of the landfill once they have reached the end of their wearable life as well as extending the life of “seconds” garments through our non-profit donation program.
In-Store Clothing and Footwear Recycling
In the U.S., 85% of clothing ends up in the landfill – that equates to almost 24 billion lbs of waste per year or 70 lbs of waste per person per year.
Columbia’s Rethreads program encourages consumers to bring in their used clothing and shoes, from any brand in clean, dry condition, to our participating retail stores to be given a new life. As a thank you, we will give anyone who contributes 10% off of a purchase of $75 or more.
Products collected at participating Columbia retail stores are sent to a textile processing facility where they are evaluated and sorted for rewear, reuse or recycling depending on specific sorting criteria. Columbia is piloting the ReThreads program in the following seven retail locations in Oregon, Washington and Minnesota:
- Portland Flagship Store
- Seattle Flagship Store
- Sellwood Outlet Store
- Marysville Outlet Store
- Mall of America Store
- Albertville Store
- Uptown Minneapolis Store
Products that are still wearable find new homes through the second-hand market. Products that cannot be worn get another life in applications such as toys, artwork and cleaning cloths. Products that cannot be reused are recycled into secondary raw materials for items such as running tracks, insulation, carpet padding, stuffing for toys and even fiber for new clothing.
We are excited to be partnering with I:CO, to take the collected products on their journey to their next life. I:CO is an innovative textile recycling solutions company whose aim is to keep used clothing and shoes in an everlasting life cycle where these items can be reprocessed, reused and recycled again and again.
Through the Rethreads Program, Columbia is joining the movement to significantly reduce the amount of apparel and footwear that ends up in landfills in order to help conserve our material resources, reduce our collective carbon footprint, and help renew the planet and our communities.
Non-profit Product Donations
We seek to stretch the life of product seconds by donating these items to non-profit organizations. Product seconds include non-sellable product returns or product that has incurred minor damages.
We do these donations twice a year from our Distribution Center in Portland, Oregon. If you are local non-profit, you can apply to pick up these garments. For more information on eligibility and product donations, please contact our Community Relations Department