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Debrand and Eastman deliver circular lanyards to the 2024 Sustainable Fashion Forum

Circular lanyards are line up on a table
Debrand will provide evergreen lanyards designed with circular principles that will be sanitized for reuse at future events. Debrand

Debrand's circular lanyard project will make its North American debut with Eastman at this year's Sustainable Fashion Forum in Austin, Texas. This partnership aims to demonstrate the circular textile process for the wider apparel industry by applying the intentional design of conference lanyards to enable the product's reuse and recycling at its end-of-life. The ultimate goal is to reduce the environmental impact of conference lanyards by diverting them from landfills.

"While textile recycling has been integral to our lanyard project in the past, we recognize that true progress lies in embracing the waste hierarchy," said Lina Londono, VP of sustainability and solutions at Debrand. "By prioritizing reuse, we not only reduce our environmental footprint but also foster a culture of mindful consumption and innovation. Our commitment to evolving our strategy to evergreen lanyards reflects our dedication to sustainability principles and ensures that we're continually striving for more impactful solutions." 

Debrand will provide evergreen lanyards designed with circular principles that will be sanitized for reuse at future events. Circular lanyards that are damaged or contaminated will be recycled by Eastman. The lanyards are 100 percent polyester for durability and will be collected and pre-processed by Debrand at the end of the conference.

"My vision for the Sustainable Fashion Forum has always been to challenge the status quo and inspire transformative change within the industry. Debrand's circular lanyard project with Eastman exemplifies the kind of innovative, collaborative solutions we strive to showcase," said Brittany Sierra, founder and CEO of the Sustainable Fashion Forum. "By reimagining the lifecycle of our conference lanyards, we're not only reducing waste but also igniting conversations about the sustainable practices of events and demonstrating the power of collaborative action in driving meaningful change within event planning and execution. This initiative serves as a microcosm of the broader shift towards sustainability within the fashion industry, showcasing how small yet impactful changes can drive significant progress towards a more sustainable future." 

Debrand selected Eastman as a partner to demonstrate how a collaborative ecosystem within the later stages of the supply chain can drive the design, production, distribution, pre-processing and circulation of circular products available en masse. Eastman has the groundbreaking advanced recycling technology needed for this project. Through Eastman's carbon renewal technology, the company can break down hard-to-recycle plastic and textile waste to its molecular level to create new products. This technology helps reduce greenhouse gas emissions compared to traditional fossil-based processes and diverts waste material from entering landfills. 

"We're thrilled to collaborate with Debrand on this circular lanyard project," said Claudia de Witte, Eastman's textiles sustainability leader. "Through our carbon renewal technology, we're able to transform end-of-life textiles into new, high-quality products, such as Naia Renew fibres. This partnership underscores Eastman's commitment to collaborating on innovative solutions that drive circularity and sustainability across the supply chain." 

More than 1.5 billion people participate in business events and conferences each year. Billions of dollars are spent on conference merchandise that rarely considers the product's end-of-life path. Small changes like circular lanyards produced specifically for reuse and recycling can have lasting impacts on reducing waste. 

Debrand piloted their initial circular lanyard project at Textile Exchange 2023 in London, U.K., where lanyards for the event were collected and recycled into yarn that could be repurposed for future garments using European textile recycler Coleo. In this latest iteration with Eastman, the goal was to design evergreen lanyards with reuse in mind, supplemented by recycling if needed, and collaborating with regional North American partners to reduce the project's overall footprint. These small-scale projects provide an example of scalable circular solutions for larger events, and it's an opportunity to showcase to attendees how an item that is often overlooked can create a large impact in the sustainability space. 

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672 Derwent Way
Delta, BC
CA, V3M 5P8


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100 Eastman Road
Kingsport, TN
US, 37660


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