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Seas The Day: 5 Fascinating Facts About SEAQUAL® Yarn

4 min read

Seas The Day: 5 Fascinating Facts About SEAQUAL® Yarn

Cover photo: Ⓒ Copyright SEAQUAL INITIATIVE 2022.

Over the last few years, interest in recycled polyester activewear, swimwear, and outerwear has skyrocketed. And yet, not all recycled polyester yarns were born the same. There is one in particular that speaks to our values of ocean protection, durability, and sustainability, which is called SEAQUAL® yarn. Invented to stem the tide of plastic pollution that is simultaneously flowing out of fashion, and into it, SEAQUAL® yarn has the power to enact “seismic change”. The manufacturers of SEAQUAL® yarn, SEAQUAL INITIATIVE are directly involved in the recycling of litter that is collected from the ocean. 

If you’re interested in our sustainable SEAQUAL® swimwear, or simply want to know about the safety of SEAQUAL® yarn, and what it consists of - check out these 5 fascinating facts. 

So let’s seas the day, and investigate the science behind SEAQUAL® yarn

1. SEAQUAL® yarn contains actual MARINE PLASTIC

SEAQUAL INITIATIVE brings together various groups, NGOs and authorities all over the world who are dedicated to ocean clean-up. The organisation takes the waste that’s collected during these clean-ups and recycles it into premium products. Plastic, being one of the most versatile (and polluting) materials, is recycled into SEAQUAL MARINE PLASTIC, a portion of which can be processed to make SEAQUAL®’s certified yarn

While you might think it’s fairly logical (why didn’t I think of that?) to transform plastic which is floating in the ocean into sustainable clothing, the reality is that much of it is not at all easy to recycle. SEAQUAL INITIATIVE explains: “although plastics can survive in the ocean for hundreds of years, UV rays, salt water and friction mean they can degrade quickly.” Thankfully, “SEAQUAL INITIATIVE is dedicated to giving a new life to all types of marine plastic.”

All SEAQUAL® yarn contains 10% SEAQUAL® MARINE PLASTIC and 90% recycled polyester from post-consumer sources (like plastic bottles). We’ve always found it pretty mind-blowing to think that swimwear made with SEAQUAL® yarn therefore contains some plastic from the ocean itself. Enjoy the ocean, while contributing to its cleanliness!

2. SEAQUAL® yarn is connected to local activism

There are lots of really interesting local projects connected to SEAQUAL INITIATIVE. One of them is located just up the coast from our home in Barcelona. Pescaplàstiks (aka Fishing Plastics) involves an annual cleanup of the seabed at Port de la Selva. Over 70 volunteers and a submarine drone from the University of Girona worked together to collect “700 kilos of garbage and 1km of fishing nets from the ocean floor and beach”. A local fisherman told SEAQUAL INITIATIVE - “it is unbelievable the amount of garbage that comes out each time. So much (...) is removed with every collection.”

This is a testament to the groundwork done by SEAQUAL-related projects, and shows how local activism can play a part in recycling efforts. 

3. Polyester is the world’s most popular fibre

Ridiculous amounts of the stuff are produced every year. Sadly, virgin polyester continues to be a hugely popular fibre in spite of its well-documented impact on the environment. Polyester comes from fossil fuels, which are driving climate change. Polyester also doesn’t break down naturally in the environment, which is why it’s so important to recycle it instead of allowing it to end up in the ocean or landfill. 

A stunning 55 million tonnes of polyester is said to be produced every year. SEAQUAL® is only a drop in the ocean when it comes to solving this problem - but it’s vital that such initiatives exist in place of slow government action. 

4. 200 tonnes of marine plastic have been recycled (so far)

As of 2021, 200 tonnes of marine plastic had been recycled by SEAQUAL INITIATIVE. 600 tonnes of general marine litter had also been processed too. We suspect this figure might now be way higher, but are impressed by SEAQUAL’s productivity. Despite being a relatively small enterprise, they are doing a fantastic job of turning waste plastic into quality recycled polyester products. 

5. SEAQUAL® yarn has great properties

As detailed by Panaprium, “fabrics made of (SEAQUAL® yarn) are stiff with excellent resiliency and tenacity. They are often used in activewear and swimwear because they are waterproof and quick-drying, unlike natural fibers such as cotton or wool.” We like how lightweight and versatile SEAQUAL® yarn is, leading to styles that are easy to roll up and pack for your holidays. 

Facts About The Sustainability Of SEAQUAL® yarn

SEAQUAL® yarn avoids the use of fossil fuels. According to Panaprium, the recycling process eliminates water. It’s an important circular solution to an industry that continues to be led by a take-make-waste system. SEAQUAL yarn is also certified by two different fibre standards, the OEKO-TEX® Class 100 certificate and GRS (Global Recycling Standard) certification. The first one ensures that SEAQUAL® yarn is free of harmful chemicals and toxins, making it 100% safe to wear. The second offers a guarantee of its recycled content and reduced impact on the environment. 

SEAQUAL®  is a community-powered yarn that aims to turn the tide on plastic waste. Help them seas the day by refusing to shop virgin polyester and opting for our styles instead!