Oxfam and Marks & Spencers scheme to recycle clothes has raised more than £1.8 million in its first year and saved nearly three million garments from going to landfill.
The retailer and charity launched the M&S and Oxfam Clothes Exchange project last year to incentivise people to donate their unwanted M&S clothing to Oxfam stores. Consumers bring their clothing to Oxfam shops and receive a £5 M&S voucher redeemable against a £35 spend on clothing, home or beauty products at M&S (see MRW story).
Revenue generated through the programme is used to help pay for Oxfam charity projects in developing countries. The scheme has also supported one of M&S Plan A environmental objectives to encourage the recycling of clothes, and divert clothes from going to landfill.
More than half a million shoppers are now recycling their clothes through the scheme.
Oxfam director of trading David McCullough said that the programme had delivered amazing results.
He said: The reason it has succeeded so well is that the British consumers love it you can save money; reduce, reuse and recycle; get rid of clothes you dont wear; declutter your home and do something for charity. Its the recession-proof way to an ethical 2009.
Marks & Spencer director of Plan A Richard Gillies added: We believe it has also tapped into a changing consumer mood which is shifting away from throwaway fashion. Despite the recession its still important to our customers to do the right thing.