Your next pair of designer glasses may be more sustainable.
Marchon Eyewear has announced that it will begin using Eastman Chemical Co.'s Acetate Renew material starting in 2021, becoming the first eyewear maker to use it for proprietary and licensed brands frames.
Marchon, with manufacturing in Puos d'Alpago, Italy, produces frames under designer names such as Calvin Klein, Diane von Furstenberg, Karl Lagerfeld and Victoria Beckham.
Acetate Renew uses Eastman's carbon renewal technology and is made from bio-based and certified recycled materials. Acetate Renew is a cellulose diacetate that consists of approximately 40 percent certified recycled content, while the remaining 60 percent is derived from renewable resources. It consequently offers lower greenhouse gas emission levels and fossil fuel usage compared to traditional acetate.
Currently, 80 percent of material used in sheet acetate frame production ends up as scrap. Now, the scrap derived from Marchon's manufacturing of acetate frames will now be returned to Eastman and recycled into new material.
Eastman has developed a chemical recycling technology that is capable of recycling complex plastic waste. This includes non-polyester plastics and mixed plastics that cannot be recycled with conventional recycling technologies.
Eastman's process breaks down the scrap and mixed waste acetate into the original molecular building blocks, which are, in turn, used to create new acetate with high levels of certified recycled content that is identical in performance to standard acetate.
"This collaboration with Marchon marks a significant milestone for advancing a circular economy for the eyewear industry," said Scott Ballard, vice president and general manager for Eastman Specialty Plastics.
As a further benefit, the partnership will help Marchon to meet consumer demand for more sustainable fashion.
"It will significantly reduce waste and greenhouse gas emissions, while maintaining our commitment to safety and sustainability without compromising the quality of our frames," Nicola Zotta, president and CEO of Marchon Eyewear said.