For 6 months (that started at the end of Jan) Marks & Spencer (M&S) have joined forces with Oxfam to set up a clothing exchange. Designed with the dual purpose of encouraging people to recycle clothes and raise money for Oxfam’s work, customers who donate M&S clothes to Oxfam will receive a voucher £5/€7, valid for one month, to use with their next purchase of £35/€50 or more. Although buying new clothes paid for with old clothes isn’t the best way of doing things in my opinion, it’s certainly not a bad way of encouraging people to recycle clothes if they are planning on buying more anyway. And perhaps they’ll find something they like in Oxfam!
This is part of M&S’s Plan A – a five year, 100 point “eco-plan”, another point being charging for plastic bags. It’s nice to see a retailer with firm actions in place and a willingness to do them. Their five pillars, to achieve by 2012 are:
- Become carbon neutral
- Send no waste to landfill
- Extend sustainable sourcing
- Help improve the lives of people in our supply chain
- Help customers and employees live a healthier life-style
What do you think?