The Opportunity In Recycled Polyethylene Terephthalate

Cause-related marketing is increasingly taking center stage these days. According to Ad Age, Coca-Cola Co. is the latest mega marketer to toss some chips in this pile.

In the mid-1980s, Coke t-shirts, sweatshirts, miniskirts and even eyeglasses were all the rage. So, in a nod to its past but clearly conscious of a growing consumer backlash to plastic water bottles, the marketer is rolling out a line of RPET t-shirts with a recycling motif, like a glass bottle with an arrow swirling around it, with little branding other than a small, red Coca-Cola tab on the bottom of the right seam.
The line of t-shirts, designed by Coke and fabricated by Park City, Utah, Revolve Apparel Project, will launch in December at Fred Segal Melrose, an ultra-hip West Hollywood boutique.
To make fabric, plastic bottles are shredded, distressed and turned into polyester thread. That thread is then blended with cotton. Patagonia makes some products from recycled plastic bottles, as well as a handful of high-fashion designers, such as Linda Loudermilk. Coke is the first true mass-market player in this segment.

Here’s another wonderful example of repurposed packaging.



About David Burn

I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. Today—after working for seven agencies in five states—I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.