Everything About Recycled Cotton
The Process To Turn Fabric Back into Fiber
The majority of recycled cotton is claimed through mechanical recycling. First, fabrics and materials are sorted by color. After sorting, the fabrics are run through a machine that shreds the fabric into yarn and further into raw fiber. This process is harsh and puts a great deal of strain on the fiber. It is not uncommon for fibers to break and entangle during shredding. The raw fiber is then spun back into yarns and then into recycled garments. The quality of recycled fiber will never have quality values equal to the original fiber. Specifically, fiber length and length uniformity will be impacted. Therefore cotton must be blended with other fibers like recycled Polyester to be made into new yarn for strength and durability.
Recycled Cotton generated from two primary sources:
1. Pre-Consumer - includes scraps created by yarn and by-products
2. Post-Consumer - includes garments,upholstery, towels, household items to be re-purposed
The largest volume of recycled cotton sources is produced through pre-consumer waste, such as cutting scraps. Post-consumer waste is more difficult to sort through due to various color shades, fabric blends, and it is generally a more labor-intensive process.