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AFI Branding launches industry-first national sustainability initiative

Australia’s largest fabric signage display manufacturer is introducing a ground-breaking sustainability program that will allow customers to return fabric for recycling within Australia. It’s the first initiative of its kind in the Australian signage industry and aims to divert 100 tonnes of fabric from landfill in its first year alone.

 

AFI Branding signage at the Commonwealth Games
 AFI Branding signage at the 2018 Commonwealth Games

Glenn Watson AFI

 "We've spent a long time researching
       a solution": Glenn Watson,
             MD AFI Branding

 

“We print over 15,000m2 of fabric per month so we recognise that we have an important role to play in sustainability,” says Glenn Watson, managing director at AFI Branding.

“After supplying the signage for the Gold Coast Commonwealth Games last year, we were able to recycle many components but not all within Australia. We wanted to change this. We’ve spent a long time researching a solution and we are really excited to have created this initiative alongside BlockTexx.”

BlockTexx is a fast-growing, Manly, NSW start-up, manufacturing commodity-level plastic including rPET and Cellulose from discarded textiles and clothing, and “leading a global movement toward a circular economy for our customers and production partners, by developing planet focussed solutions that divert textile waste from landfill and into sustainable products.”

The ‘be sustainable’ initiative, described as “a fabric takeback scheme where all fabric printed by AFI Branding can now be directly returned for recycling,” will be launched on 1st August 2019.

AFI Branding is inviting the return of printed fabrics to its headquarters in Carrum Downs, Victoria where it will be sorted and separated and provided to BlockTexx for repurposing, all within Australia. Through the program, AFI and Blocktexx aim to divert 100 tonnes of fabric from retail in the first year alone – rising to 300 tonnes by year three.

factory at AFI
  AFI Branding's factory at Carrum Downs, VIC

 The company supplies a range of industries within Australia including retail, events and exhibitions, and major retailers Mimco, Best and Less and Myer are amongst its clients. 

Mimco, a long term partner of AFI Branding, is the first retailer to join the initiative and will start returning fabric next month with the official launch. 

“Mimco has proudly been using AFI’s ReFrame system for many years now,” says Brad Poett, VM production manager at Mimco. “Working towards our goal of promoting a good business journey through sustainable processes, we are proud to have worked with AFI Branding through the formative stages of this program. We are so happy that the recycling process will now be available locally and to more clients of AFI.”

be sustainable

‘be sustainable’ – how the initiative works

Client returns fabric to AFI Branding in Carrum downs, Victoria
Fabric is sorted and separated and stored at AFI Branding
Naked fabric transported to BlockTexx textile waste recycling centre from January 2020 onwards

BlockTexx S.O.F.T.TM process: from fabric separation, BlockTexx creates two high quality recycled materials:
rPET for use in textiles, packaging, food containers, bottles and building products.
Powdered Cellulose for use in textiles, cosmetics, pharmaceuticals and food products.

BlockTexx co-founder Adrian Jones says textile waste in Australia is beginning to gain the attention it needs from government, industry bodies and forward-thinking companies like AFI Branding.

“Stakeholder collaboration is key to achieving commercial scale impact and making a real difference in diverting textile waste from landfill,” says Jones. “We will begin processing in January 2020 and our goal is to divert 35,000 tonnes of textile waste from landfill each year. This partnership is a big step towards achieving this goal.”

For more information on the scheme visit https://www.afibranding.com.au/blog/be-sustainable

To sign up, contact AFI Branding on 1300 652 514.

More details on the company here: