The Microfibre Consortium (TMC) facilitates the development of practical solutions for the textile industry to minimise fibre fragmentation and release to the environment from textile manufacturing and product life cycle. The organisation presents the opportunity to align globally as an industry through its connection through its member base at the brand, retail, supplier, research, industry organisation and policy level. This cross-industry connection expedites understanding and reducing the possibility of repetition of research. This collaborative approach allows more extensive understanding, and progress to levels of understanding that would be unattainable in a stand-alone organisation.
With a vision that states ‘A future with managed fibre fragmentation and release from textiles, to the environment’, the work of TMC looks to connect and translate deep academic research, with the reality of commercial supply chain production to offer solutions to its brand, retail and supplier members and ultimately for the greater good of our ecosystems.
As an industry, we have become increasingly aware of the issue of fibre fragmentation and its potential as a serious environmental polluter, with a growing body of scientific literature related to the presence of textile fibre fragments in aquatic and atmospheric environments, associated emission routes, and potential consequences.
As well as being damaging to wildlife and ecosystems, there are concerns that their physical presence, and propensity as carriers for other harmful chemicals, is posing a health risk to humans by entering the food chain through ingestion by aquatic life, or through inhalation of airborne fragments.
Although exact figures to the extent of the impact from the clothing industry have not yet been quantified, both media and NGO organisations are quick to hold the industry responsible. Therefore, it is the obligation of those associated to textiles to take action in order to mitigate industry risk, as well as to drive industry change through targeted manufacturing action.
The Microfibre Consortium [Company #11647708] is legally registered in the UK (2018) as a Company Ltd (The Outdoor Microfibre Consortium Ltd) by Guarantee, operating as a non-profit. It works as a product focused, collaborative approach to address, and align on the emerging need for a better understanding of fibre fragmentation in regard to pollution.