March 21, 2018. From food crops, smart stitches and 3D-modelled clothes, to advanced recycling processes and biodegradable clothes with health benefits. On March 20, five innovations that can help speed up the shift to a circular waste-free fashion industry and protect the planet were awarded the third Global Change Award, sharing a 1 million euro grant from the non-profit H&M Foundation.
The annual challenge is looking for tomorrow’s game changers, and the third edition attracted 2,600 entries from 151 countries – a truly global and strong movement to create a fashion industry operating within the planetary boundaries. Looking at all entries this year, they provided strong engagement in digitalization, smart processes, and some new and unexpected materials.
The result of the online vote:
“The Agraloop will kick-off a new paradigm for natural fiber by levering food crop waste for textile fiber production. We seek to help our industry begin to decouple from cotton as the world’s dominant natural fiber resource. Winning the Global Change Award means we can begin to unlock huge value for the textile and fashion industry. We can now propel this important technology much faster into scaled production. The grant will be used for optimizing our closed-loop technology, protecting IP, and beginning to produce commercial Agraloop BioFibre™ fiber productions”, says Isaac Nichelson spokesperson for Crop A Porter (Agraloop).
Besides innovations with potential to have a positive impact on the industry and planet, the Global Change Award is looking for scalability, that the idea is economically sustainable and novel and how well suited the team is to make a difference.
“I congratulate all five winning teams. They show that innovation knows no national borders and can rest in anyone’s head. This day marks the start of a one-year innovation accelerator where H&M Foundation, Accenture and KTH Royal Institute of Technology in Stockholm will support the winners to cut years off their timeline, bringing them to fashion and innovation hubs such as Stockholm, New York and Shanghai”, says Karl-Johan Persson, Board member H&M Foundation and CEO H & M Hennes & Mauritz AB.
The accelerator provides a toolbox of skills, networks and exposure to help the winners actualise their ideas, maximise performance and get industry access.
The Global Change Award has become the hotspot for early-stage fashion innovation, and today a Trend report is released by Accenture and the H&M Foundation to share lessons learned, findings and trends within circular fashion and open innovation based on analytics performed on the thousands of applications submitted.