To Reuse or Not

Tablecloth Re-manufacturing Model

Connie Ulasewicz

Business Case
Source: Bloomsbury Fashion Business Cases
DOI: 10.5040/9781474208772.014
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San Francisco residents send 39 million pounds of textile products, such as linens, clothing, and towels, to landfill every year, making up 4 percent of all solid waste being sent to landfill. One of these post-consumer textile (PCT) items, tablecloths from the hotel industry, has been diverted and utilized in a secondary supply chain where they are remanufactured as bags to be sold in grocery shops or handed out at conferences. Two major challenges for remanufacturing these tablecloths are the lack of continuous supply to meet production demands, and the amount and location of stains or tears, which makes sections of the raw materials unsuitable for reuse. A purchase order for 500 shopping bags could not be fulfilled due to a lack of available discarded tablecloths. If there is no ability to reorder fabric as needed, as in the traditional supply chain, the question is, can discarded textile products be a viable source for remanufacturing?

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