Japan-based Teijin Fibers Limited and US-based manufacturer of ski gloves, Swany America Corp. have recently announced starting a closed-loop recycling program for used polyester ski gloves. In this program, Swany America will use Teijin Fiber's ECO STORM - a recyclable, waterproof and breathable material made from recycled fibers laminated with a highly durable thin polyester film - for a new glove in its 2009-2010 winter lineup. The ECO-X-the world's first recyclable ski glove-will be available at retail stores in the United States, Canada and Europe beginning in September 2009.
In addition, Swany will also include the collection and recycling of used products through Teijin Fibers' recycling system, called ECO CIRCLE. ECO CIRCLE is a system employing the world's first technology for chemical recycling, which chemically decomposes polyester for conversion into new polyester raw materials that offer purity comparable to those derived from petroleum. Customers will be invited to mail their worn-out ECO-X gloves to Swany America using special envelopes supplied at the time of purchase. The gloves' polyurethane palms will be cut off at Swany Warehouse in Johnston, New York and recycled domestically. The remaining polyester parts, such as shells, insulation, waterproof and breathable inserts and hollow core inner linings, will be sent to Teijin Fibers' Matsuyama plant in Ehime Prefecture, Japan, where they will be chemically decomposed and converted into new polyester raw material at a recycling facility.