Repreve & Quiksilver: A Sustainable Partnership

Is product sustainability something you consider when purchasing apparel items? If so, you probably already known about brands like Patagonia and H&M. Both are trying to be more sustainable and reduce the negative impact on the environment. If not, this may be something you should think about.

H&M

While big brands like Patagonia and Quiksilver are getting all the praise for being sustainable many people forget about the fiber and yarn that goes into the garment and where it comes from.

One of the places sustainable yarns come from is Unifi. It develops and manufactures specialty yarns. Unifi’s brand Repreve, uses 100% recycled materials to create fibers and yarns. Repreve transforms plastic bottles with the #1 marking at the bottom into bottle flakes. These bottle flakes are made up of the same chemicals use in polyester, which allows the flakes to be made into different fabrics.

Repreve’s Instagram

Although there are several brands that use Repreve in its products, the brand I am going to concentrate on is Quiksilver. Quiksilver is a lifestyle apparel brand that focuses on action sports. The company designs and produces wetsuits, snow outerwear, surfing apparel, clothing and accessories. In 2014, Quiksilver released a new collection of board shorts called AG47 New Wave. These board shorts were made using Repreve’s recycled fibers. Since a large amount of Quiksilver’s products are focused around water sports, the partnership with Repreve helps both Quiksilver and the consumer contribute to the reduction of waste pollution in the ocean. Each pair of board shorts is made up of about 11 recycled plastic bottles. With this new collection, Repreve is used in more than 75% of all of Quiksilver’s board shorts. Along with recycled water bottles, the board shorts are made with Quiksilver’s Dry Flight Technology and Scotchgard Protector Repellent. The technology and repellent allows water to roll off the fabric and dry quickly, making the board shorts both sustainable and a high performance product.

AG47 New Wave Board Shorts

In my opinion this partnership between Repreve and Quiksilver has the potential to be even greater than it already is. As far as online content, Repreve is doing some things very well while still having the opportunity to improve in other areas. The website is an example of what is being done well. In comparison to Unifi’s website, Repreve’s site is extremely consumer and business friendly. The site uses bright colors, photos and illustrations to catch users’ attention. It’s easy to navigate and even explains the recycling process in a way that the average consumer can understand. It also showcases the brands that use or “make a difference” with Repreve. Repreve does a great job creating awareness about the brands it works with and products produced from those partnerships.

Repreve’s Website

Repreve has the opportunity to grow its social media presence, especially on Instagram. Currently, Repreve is not verified on Instagram. This is an issue because if potential customers go to look for a brand on social media and it’s not verified it may cause confusion on the legitimacy of the social handle. Other users may think that the brand is not popular enough to be verified, thus losing potential customers. Working with Instagram to become verified may also increase the number of followers and interactions on Instagram. Repreve’s twitter is verified and has the followers to show for it.

Repreve’s Instagram

With the twitter account, Repreve has the opportunity to be more fun and interactive. Currently, Repreve’s twitter consists of a lot of retweets and branded content. I think that if Repreve added more exciting things like gifs or interactive content like contest or sweepstakes they may get more interaction with users and brands. For example, Repreve could do a social media contest where users compete in who can collect the most plastic bottles. The reward for a contest like this could be a pair of board shorts from Quiksilver. Interactive content creates brand awareness and gets customers excited about the product. Thus, creating customer loyalty and increased profits.

Repreve’s Twitter