A new £2 million fund has been launched to help businesses in Scotland find ways to be more sustainable in the production of garments and other textiles.

The Circular Textiles Fund, set up by Zero Waste Scotland and the Scottish Government, will go directly to businesses across the textiles industry to support a more circular economy.

It aims to support innovative projects with objectives such as reusing and recycling clothing, making manufacturing processes more sustainable and reducing environmental impact.

Applications to the fund can be from individual businesses or represent a collaboration between businesses to achieve the objectives.

Iain Gulland, chief executive of Zero Waste Scotland, said: “As a nation, we need to rethink the way we make, buy and use products and take action to consume more responsibly.

“Businesses have a key role to play in facilitating that shift, helping customers make more sustainable purchasing decisions while also contributing to a greener economy.

“With textiles responsible for such a significant chunk of the carbon footprint of Scotland’s household waste, it’s vital that we move away from a throwaway approach to products and materials and make things last instead.

“The Circular Textiles Fund is a fantastic opportunity for businesses to be part of the solution.”

The new fund has been introduced after the Scottish Government launched two public consultations on proposals for a Circular Economy Bill and Route Map to 2025. The consultations form part of strategic plans to deliver Scotland’s zero waste and circular economy ambitions.

Lorna Slater, Scotland’s circular economy minister, said: “Every material that is wasted comes at a cost to our planet, but it’s clear that textiles are having a disproportionate environmental impact.

“From fashion to furniture, there are huge opportunities for businesses with creative ideas to help address that problem. That’s why we are creating the £2million Circular Textiles Fund, which will help businesses in Scotland turn their proposals into reality.

“Alongside our Circular Economy Bill, this will help grow the number of sustainable businesses in Scotland and help prevent textiles from ending up in landfill or incineration.”

The fund was launched at Kalopsia Collective in Dunfermline, which is a social enterprise textiles product manufacturer specialising in the development of sustainable businesses models.

Zero Waste Scotland, a not-for-profit environmental organisation funded by the Scottish Government, exists to lead Scotland to use products and resources responsibly, focusing on where this can have the greatest impact on climate change.

For more details about the new fund, visit zerowastescotland.org.uk/content/circular-textiles-fund

The deadline for submitting expressions of interest is 29 July 2022.