Global warming is a serious concern for the Earth, but did you ever imagine how the fashion industry is contributing to environmental concerns? When we think about fashion all that comes to our mind is the glamour and style but never about what goes into making the clothes you are wearing. It’s not news that the fashion industry is getting famous for the waste it generates. As per reports, about 92 million tonnes of solid waste is generated through manufacturing, which is ultimately burnt up in smoke or resting in landfills.
Surprisingly, brands maintain their image by burning their products rather than selling at a discount. In 2018, Burberry was called out for having burnt goods worth $37 million. Not only just the brands, but the retailers, factories, and mills waste massive amounts worth trillion dollars of unused raw material.
Realizing the horrendous impact of the wastage on the environment, brands are now pledging to curb burning unsold stock and instead are selling them at discounts. Brands such as Zara and H&M have adopted recycling programs to tackle the wastage problem. Through this initiative, customers can drop unwanted clothes in the fashion bins at these stores. The unused garments are then sent to charities such as Red Cross or to recycling plants where they are either reused or recycled into products such as cleaning cloths and insulation fibres.
However, despite all the efforts made by the fashion giants, the question that remains is whether these efforts will be enough as compared to the level of clothing collections launch every year?
Blockchain To The Rescue
This is where blockchain can and is starting to play a major role. Gradually creeping its way into the fashion industry, the disruptive technology is not only solving the problems of counterfeiting but also is managing the excess wastage of fabric. With blockchain, the source of products can be tracked to confirm authenticity. Various companies and startups are now stepping in, integrating blockchain into their business. For instance, Plastic Bank in Vancouver uses blockchain to reward people from developing countries for recycling garbage. A startup by the name Queen of Raw uses blockchain and AI to track leftover fabrics and sell it to buyers who further sell them to designers.
A similar kind of blockchain-based project, Curate is tapping into another dimension of the fashion industry and utilizing the potential of blockchain to solve the flaws. Curate is a style discovery decentralized app that is attempting to solve the problem of counterfeiting and fraud in the fashion industry. It uses the RFID protocol to enable users to track the authenticity and genuineness of the purchased product by scanning the RFID code with their mobile devices. Along with providing a solution, it has also introduced a remarkable social networking concept on its platform, that will essentially connect consumers, retailers and designers all over the world on a social media like platform.
Curate rewards all its users for contributing and engaging on the platform in the form of posting fashion content, curating fashion styles, upvoting or commenting on the posts. The platform is based on Ethereum blockchain and rewards users in Bitcoin, Ethereum and CUR8 tokens. CUR8 is the platform’s own ERC-20 utility token that can be exchanged with other Ethereum based utility tokens.
Blockchain is the avant-garde movement in the fashion industry today. While it addresses counterfeiting concerns, the distributed ledger can increase efficiency in the industry without having to maintain paper records, facilitating instant retrieval of the original source of materials. Reduced waste will lead to reduced disposal or burning of materials and therefore lead to a healthier environment. The enhanced transparency and a streamlined process through the implementation of blockchain will certainly reduce the serious impact that the clothing industry has on the environment. Curate was astute in leveraging the potential of blockchain to establish a remarkable platform that somewhere focuses and improves on ‘life after sale’.
Official website- https://curate.style/