Marks & Spencer (M&S), the iconic British retailer announced the launch of its Clothes Exchange Programme in India today in association with Goonj to encourage customers to recycle their clothes and help them live more sustainable lifestyles.
M&S believes old clothes should have a future: they should be put together for a good cause and not just thrown out. It is therefore asking its customers to bring in their preloved clothing of any brand to stores across India. In exchange, the customers will receive an M&S voucher worth Rs.600 for their contribution. The programme will run across 39 stores all over India in cities including Chennai Express Avenue Mall, Market City – Chennai and Prestige Vadapalani.
The Clothes Exchange is designed to reduce the tens of millions of tonnes of clothing sent by the public to landfill around the world each year. All the clothes contributed will be reused and recycled by Goonj and not a single item will go to landfill.
James Munson, Managing Director, Marks & Spencer, India, said: “We’re delighted to bring our Clothes Exchange programme to India. We recently launched our bold, new sustainability plan, Plan A 2025 to tackle social and environmental factors of importance in India and the Clothes Exchange is one of our key initiatives. Clothes Exchange makes it really easy for customers to participate and play their part in reducing the waste that goes to landfill and protecting the environment for generations to come.”
Anshu Gupta, Founder Goonj says about the tie-up, “I am hoping that people see this as an opportunity to easily connect with development work across rural India. For us the focus will be on ensuring that every unit of clothing is put to optimum use. Through our Cloth for Work initiative, we will be using it as a reward to rural communities, who also put in their efforts, wisdom and resources in solving their problems across far flung villages of India.”
TG Ganesh, Head of Sustainability, Marks & Spencer India said, “At M&S, one of our key Plan A 2025 commitments is to send zero waste to landfill and through our association with Goonj, we can bring this dream alive. We are proud to be associated with Goonj, an award winning social enterprise that focuses on helping underprivileged people. We believe that we can make a huge difference with our customers by helping them feel good about doing good with a small incentive.”
The Clothes Exchange campaign in India builds on Marks & Spencer’s Global Plan A initiative. Globally, 29 million items of clothing worth an estimated INR 164 crores has been raised for charity through Marks & Spencer’s customer clothes recycling schemes across the business since 2008.