Cotton bags are eco-friendly for more than one reason. Most people will enjoy having them since they can be used hundreds and hundreds of times before ever wearing out, making them a more sustainable choice than your average plastic bag. However, they’re also great for the planet since they can be very easily recycled when their long lives finally do come to an end.
Here’s what goes down after you slip your old cotton bag into a recycling bin.
Firstly, all the cotton than has been collected for recycling is sorted by type and colour. Next up, it is taken through stripping machines. These are used to break down the yarns and fabric into much smaller pieces, which can then be pulled apart into individual fibres. Those fibres are then cleaned and mixed a few times until they are ready for reuse.
Of course, one effect of this process is that the resulting recycled fibres are much shorter than the ones that were used to make your original cotton bag. This makes them more difficult to spin, so recycling plants will usually blend them with virgin cotton fibres to improve strength and length. Essentially, recycled fibres supplement newer ones, meaning that less cotton has to be harvested in order to make new items.
That recycled cotton is often combined with recycled plastics in order to create textiles and clothing, but there are several other things that can happen to it.
It can be made into:
- Polishing and Wiper Clothes
- High-Quality Paper
- Stuffing for Insulation and Furniture
- Bank Notes
Some recycled cotton fibres are even used by the agricultural industry in order to help grow certain crops.
Because the fibres are already dyed and treated there is no need to use any additional chemicals in order to make new products. Recycling thereby reduces the need for further crops, and even completely used up cotton fibres that cannot be recycled can be composted, so they’ll never end up in landfills. This is just part of why the team at Cotton Bag Co is so enthusiastic about letting people in on the benefits of cotton bags.