Despite the fact that 85% of Italians consider sustainable products to be more innovative and qualitatively superior and as many as 77% are willing to spend up to 10% more for quality purchases1, there are still few companies in the textile sector that are making an integrated business strategy with sustainability. Leading the way are the fashion and luxury companies, which are increasingly taking action on sustainability drivers, especially product and supply chain sustainability, asking their suppliers to adapt both in terms of certification and traceability.
Following this example, Torcitura Padana knows that standing out and making a name for itself in terms of sustainability can be a great opportunity for the company. This is why it turned to Circularity to integrate sustainability into its business processes, in a multi-objective project geared towards responsible material and energy consumption and the well-being of its employees.
The Circularity project for Torcitura Padana can be summarised in 5 main objectives:
The Circularity team analysed Torcitura Padana’s current way of sourcing and managing waste in order to consider internal improvement actions that approach a circular economy model.
The analysis showed that paper and cardboard packaging of incoming raw materials and plastic residues of spools and yarns constituted the most important waste both quantitatively and with the highest added value for recovery and recycling possibilities. The results showed that Torcitura Padana already has in place a virtuous internal collection and separation strategy that limits the generation of ‘mixed’ waste, typically characterised by low recovery rates. However, no details are available on the actual quantities of recycled and lost waste.
To accompany the virtuous process already in place for Torcitura Padana’s waste, Circularity therefore proposed to:
- Define a policy aimed at identifying the most virtuous recovery plants according to circular economy parameters (e.g. the presence or absence of End of Waste status or recovery efficiency);
- Improve the process of separation and storage of plastic packaging, separating them by colour; this allows for more homogeneous material flows, characterised by higher recycling percentages, increasing efficiency from 88% to 95%;
- Defining and implementing a policy that rewards and selects a supply chain with a reduced amount of packaging material used, with an estimated reduction in related waste of up to 10%.
Considering the focus on sustainability issues and Torcitura Padana’s ability to optimise its processes to the best of its ability, it is believed that these improvement goals can be assessed by company management as achievable in the short term.
To create the optimal conditions for all Torcitura Padana members to be involved with respect to corporate values and objectives, we launched a “climate” analysis using a questionnaire to study the corporate population and investigate the needs of employees in terms of welfare.
Starting from the results that emerged, the involvement initiatives that can be achieved in terms of costs and feasibility during this year were identified:
By launching the proposed actions, Torcitura Padana would benefit from a more satisfied and motivated company population to achieve shared objectives. Equally important to employee engagement is their customers’ perception of the brand. Being aware of the drivers that lead consumers to choose between different competitors is one of the most important factors for the orientation of your business.
Torcitura Padana’s most important customers were questioned in order to investigate what distinguishes it from other competitors and which aspects of sustainability should be developed by the brand. The survey showed that 66% of the companies interviewed consider it very important to have suppliers who use sustainable raw materials, such as recycled fibers, organic fibers and fibers from responsible management of resources.
As a last step, a Communication Plan was created that enhances the company’s results in terms of sustainability so that Torcitura Padana affirms its brand in a distinctive positioning, promoting key values aimed at consolidating the corporate image as an accredited brand in its process of Sustainable Development.
Ensuring access to sustainable energy sources is one of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations, which envisages significantly increasing the share of renewable energy in the global energy mix by 2030. Considering that in Europe, energy production and use account for over 75% of greenhouse gas emissions2, it is understandable that one of the goals of the Green Deal aims at decarbonising the energy system through the use of renewable sources.
Torcitura Padana has chosen to actively participate in achieving these goals by embracing the solution proposed by Circularity partner Innovatec Power. The work in progress involves the installation of a photovoltaic system capable of reducing CO2 emissions in the industrial process by 32% per year, corresponding to 341 tonnes of CO2 avoided; this reduction is equivalent to the annual electricity consumption of 171 families.
Torcitura Padana’s commitment in the field of renewable energy will thus be rewarded not only with an environmental benefit, but also with economic savings estimated at up to approximately €73,000 per year.