The textile industry spans the globe, and it encompasses clothing, table linens, and bedding. This means that textiles stands as one of the world’s largest industries of all, since everyone needs clothing to wear. This may range from pants and jeans for everyday wear all the way to formal wear, military or work uniforms, and more. The United States in particular is a large market and producer alike for these clothes, and that trend is set to continue well into the future. The American apparel market is worth over $300 billion today and is still growing, and the average American today buys twice as many clothes as they did just 20 years ago. An average American woman has one outfit for every day of the month, compared to just nine in 1930. Meanwhile, Americans are urged to make donations for non profit organizations such as military families or veterans charities, rather than throw old clothes away. If more charity donations and old clothes are diverted away from landfills, this can do a lot of good.
Recycling and Waste of Modern Clothing
Helping military families and making donations for non profit organizations is recommended by many, and doing so can help reduce the textile industry’s current rates of waste. The bad news is that many old clothes and textiles are simply thrown away and end up in landfills, rather than becoming donations for non profit organizations. It is estimated that around 12 million tons of old clothes end up being discarded and going into landfills every year, and that figures out to 70 pounds of discarded textiles per year for the average adult American. This means that the textile industry has one of the lowest reclamation rates out of all industries with recyclable materials. Many initiatives to recycle glass, plastic, wood, and steel are robust in the United States, but only around 15% of textiles are recycled or reused productively. The remaining 85% become trash, but that can be changed. Some old clothes are shredded and remade into industrial rags or furniture stuffing, but many would argue that these old clothes are better off as donations for non profit organizations.
The news is not all bad. Many old clothes are thrown away, but many are indeed recycled, and Americans have proven year after year that they have a strong charitable spirit. Charity sites are open every day of the year, and donations for non profit organizations area always used for humanitarian reasons. Millions of old garments are given away per year and given to the needy, and some old clothes are shipped around the world to provide for needy communities internationally. It may be said that boosting the textile industry’s poor recycle rate may be a simple matter of stoking the existing American spirit of charity to new heights. Americans have already shown that they donate a lot of old clothes, not to mention housewares and even money. This can be taken further.
Making a Donation
Making donations for non profit organizations is a simple process, even if a household has a vast inventory of clothes. It is likely that most well-off households have more cloths than the family members are using, and a straightforward process can be used to sort out what to keep and what to donate. Members of a household can gather all clothes and personal accessories from across the house and assemble it all into a single, large pile as a convenient inventory. Now, everyone can sort through all of thes4e clothes and items and decide what they want to keep, and what can be donated. Items to be donated may be out of fashion, worn out, redundant, or the wrong size. Shirts and pants, dresses, shoes, coats, scarves, and even gloves and sunglasses may be assessed this way. Even a large inventory can be handled easily like this, and clothes to be donated can be packed into bags or boxes for easy transport. The homeowner may look up local charity donations sites if they need to, then drive over and drop off all of their donations. The donor may even receive a tax rebate form for the value of all items donated this way.