Reet Aus made history by becoming the first Estonian company to receive Germany's highest national environmentally conscious design award, the German Ecodesign Award. Reet Aus UPMADE® collection was honoured in the Product category, and the award was presented by the German Federal Minister for the Environment, Steffi Lemke, at the awards ceremony on December 4th in Berlin.
The German Ecodesign Award is Germany's top national award for sustainable design, organized since 2012 by The Federal Ministry for the Environment and the Federal Environment Agency in collaboration with the International Design Center Berlin. With the award, Germany recognizes design as a changemaker and driving force in altering processes.
The award's jury* consists of several renowned experts, including product and communication designers, architects, and environmental specialists. The evaluation focuses on the degree of innovation, design quality, and environmental characteristics. Impacts on everyday culture and consumer behavior are also considered. The entire product life cycle, from pre-production stages, through manufacturing, distribution, and use, to the "end of life," is considered.
This year, 360 entries were submitted to the competition, and Reet Aus UPMADE® Collection was highlighted as an innovative solution in the Product category, contributing to the transformation of the global industry.Jury member & Head of the Circular Economy and Global Value Chains Group in the Product and Material Flows Division at the Öko-Institut in Freiburg, Siddharth Prakash emphasized:
"Reet Aus project turns the spotlight on the less well-known issue of pre-consumer waste in textile production. It’s a superb illustration of how crucial the design phase is for resource-efficient recycling of textile waste. And it’s an important practical guide to minimum ecodesign requirements for textile products in the EU."
In mass production, an average of 25-40% of new fabrics are considered pre-consumer waste and end up in landfills. Reet Aus uses a science-based production model UPMADE that uses only pre-consumer leftover fabrics, meaning no virgin materials are produced for production.
Industrial upcycling reduces the fashion industry’s impact on the environment by circulating fabrics leftover from mass production back into production using the design. This ables to save on average 75% water and 88% energy and emit 80% less CO2 in comparison to traditional production.
Read more about the Reet Aus winning project from German Ecodesign Award page.
*Jury members from left to right: Siddharth Prakash | Anja Hanslik on behalf of Dr. Bettina Hoffmann MdB | Werner Aisslinger | Dr. Bettina Rechenberg | Prof. Dr. Claudia Perren | Prof. Matthias Held | Prof. em. Anna Berkenbusch | Prof. em. Günter Horntrich | Prof. Friederike von Wedel-Parlow