Press Release

WECO 5: Finalized Results show an innovative and sustainable textile service industry

hvhgvETSA, the European Textile Services Association, representing the textile services industry consisting of laundries, detergents, manufacturers and machineries has recently finalized its WECO 5 study on the subject of resource consumption in industrial laundries in cooperation with Henrik Grüttner of Southern Denmark University. Resource consumption in the case of this study is referring to water, electricity, oil and gas, detergent (chemicals) usage while also looking at carbon emissions all throughout the textile services value chain. The release of this survey on resource consumption is but a  first step in a larger, holistic analysis of the textile service sector which is ongoing particularly with regard to End of Life (EoL) textiles. We look forward to continual research in this regard, in cooperation with all ETSA members.

With respect to this survey on resource consumption, ETSA members have been committed to sustainability and circularity as these are pivotal to textile services' business model, but this has become especially salient for the industry in light of ETSA becoming a European Commission, Climate Pact Ambassador in 2021, with ETSA acting as a bridge between the textile services industry and European policy makers. This survey on resource consumption in the textile service industry is a comprehensive and holistic look at the strides the industry has made with respect to circularity and sustainability in recent years, showcasing great advancements in resource-use reduction. This report builds off and expands upon the great work that WECO 4 delivered. Moreover, while this report is a continuation of WECO 4 (and indeed the WECO studies that preceded them), the results for WECO 5 come from a much larger sample size of data thereby increasing the reliability and validity of the results, and giving the reader an integrated view of the workings of the textile services industry over an elongated period of time.

The detailed results of the survey (complete report) are a privilege of ETSA Membership and are linked at the end of this Press Release, and it shows that the textile services industry is an industry which is incredibly multi-faceted and diverse, but above all, committed to slashing  resource consumption across the board and boosting circularity. The results illustrate the industry's progression since 2007, exemplifying a unilateral reduction in resource use, especially in carbon emissions as per kilogram of laundry. While the increasingly more frugal and efficient use of resources in the past decade and a half, to deliver the same hygienic end-product cannot be understated, one must remain mindful that some textile items  may require more resources (such as water, detergent, transport and electricity) than others to meet hygiene, safety and consumer standards.

 Nevertheless, especially in light of the legally binding commitments of the EU Climate Pact and the EU's 2022 Energy Crisis, it is without doubt a positive development to observe the gradual reduction in carbon emissions and electricity consumption in laundries over time, which is due to a multitude of factors such as reduction in the consumption of fuel for heating, changes in the pattern for heating fuels and a reduction in the average emissions for electricity in Europe, among other variables.

Moreover, the results of the WECO 5 study also show a drastic reduction in the usage of water as well as oil and gas when compared to 2007 and 2011 figures, a trend that has continued when comparing 2015 figures to 2021. Nevertheless, the textile services is an industry which is committed to sustainability and circularity and will continue to improve its practices. Currently the main sources of emissions, are primarily heating fuels, transport and electricity. These without a doubt represent an area for future improvement and innovation where the industry will undoubtedly deliver in the coming years as work already started. While oil and gas usage is high, many laundries are improving and running pilots through the use of alternative green energy sources, while other laundries are experimenting with slashing emissions in transport and logistics. The finalization of this report shows both the integrity of ETSA members and the textile service's industry by showcasing, in objective and scientific terms, both the great progress the textile service industry has made in recent years as well as in identifying areas for deepened innovation and improvement.

Click here to access the study

If you have difficulty accessing this study or the "Members Area" please contact ETSA Secretariat 



ETSA: Representing textile rental companies

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To find out more about our members including suppliers, national associations and research institutes click here

ETSA: In partnership with suppliers of detergents, fabrics and machinery

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To find out more about our members including textile rental companies, national associations and research institutes click here

ETSA: Coordinating national textile service associations and working with research institutes

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To find out more about our members including textile rental companies and suppliers, click here