Campaign for Wool teams up with Hubbub on #WhatsInMyWash campaign

The Campaign for Wool is supporting a new awareness campaign to help the public understand the environmental and health impact of synthetic clothing.

The #WhatsInMyWash campaign, launched by environmental charity Hubbub, focuses on the plastic microfibers that are released on waterways after washing clothes, which often end up in food.

It comes as new research reveals that 44% of Brits don’t know that synthetic fibres such as polyester, acrylic or nylon are actually plastic. However, synthetic fibres are on the rise, and now account for around 60% of all clothing produced.

According to the charity, half a million tonnes of plastic microfibers are released into the ocean each year, 15 times more than the plastic microbeads from cosmetics. The washing of textiles contributes to 35% of the total microplastics entering the oceans.

“Plastic microfibres are ending up in our waterways, ecosystems and in our food and drink and we don’t yet know what impact this will have.  The issue is complicated and the messages are confusing,” said Trewin Restorick, CEO of Hubbub.

The Campaign for Wool said that few in the textile and fashion industries were aware of the impact of machine washing of garments made of synthetic, mainly petrochemical fibres.

“The global retail industry is undergoing an unprecedented conversation about the impact of microplastics in the environment and in our daily lives,” added Peter Ackroyd MBE DL, COO of the Campaign for Wool.

“A return to great quality, long lasting clothing made from natural fibres can help remedy this and we would urge the public to check clothes labels when shopping and look for fabrics that don’t add to this problem.”

The Campaign for Wool and Hubbub launched a series of tips for consumers, including buying higher-quality clothing, washing clothes at a lower temperature and avoiding the tumble dryer.

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