The textile value chain has become a take-make-waste system that depletes resources and creates waste at an unprecedented rate. OVAM takes several initiatives to contribute to a more circular textile value chain.

Textiles is a collective term for the product group consisting of clothing, footwear, linen and products made from natural or synthetic fibres. The textile fraction contains both reusable and non-reusable textiles. The business model is based on a linear economy with overconsumption at its core. 

Separate collection

In Flanders, both reusable and nonreusable textiles are collected via door-to-door collections (at least four times a year), or via street containers (1 per 1,000 inhabitants) and the recycling park. Reusable textiles can also be taken to the reuse shop. The quantity of textiles collected separately is increasing, but the share that is fit for reuse is decreasing. 

Circular fashion and textiles

OVAM, together with Flanders DC, entered a dialogue with stakeholders and policy-makers in the autumn of 2020 to accelerate the transition to a circular fashion and textile sector. The main messages can be found in this presentation. OVAM and Flanders DC will translate these messages into specific activities which they, together with the stakeholders, can undertake to contribute to a more circular textile chain in the years to come.   

Ongoing initiatives


  • Working with Close The Loop, Flanders DC and Circular Flanders to guide fashion entrepreneurs on the basics of the circular method. 
  • Discover what fashion companies in Flanders have done, thanks to a Close The Loop project. Presented in a short video.  
  • Circular Flanders supports innovative projects with funding by Open Call. See an overview here.  

Professional textiles 

In 2017, OVAM commissioned Centexbel, the Belgian knowledge centre for textiles, to investigate the main ‘hidden’ professional textile flows. Based on the results of that research, the ‘Guide Circular Professional Textiles’ was published, which aims to inspire and encourage producers, suppliers and users of business textiles to include their textiles in the circular economy.

Motiv also produced a guide, ’How to buy circular industrial textiles’, to help buyers make sustainable choices.