Public procurers can benefit from sustainable approach to work wear

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We recently presented these recommendations for the Advisory Group of the European Commission on government public procurement and they were received with great interest. With our approach we hope to have given the commission a solid basis and the instruments to develop an integral policy towards circular work-wear in Europe and to set an example for the entire textile industry.

Interested in our recommendations? Please click here. For any information, please get in touch

We were featured in a report from The Green Deal Circular Procurement, an initiative to help encourage the purchase of circular goods. The report comes as a result of work between 45 public and private sector participants to identify how to best use the procurement process to shape more circular procurement. Rijkswaterstaat is referenced for both its work on the ECAP project and on REBus.

You can read the report here: ENG Green Deal_Circular Procurement Magazine.

Work wear report

We have produced a number of reports which outline the role of public procurers in developing circularity in this sector.

Part one was published in March 2017 and gives insight into the development of circular work wear in north-western European industry countries. European Textiles and Workwear Market Report .

Part two Embedding Circular Procurement in purchasing of workwear explores the opportunities and barriers to sharing and implementing circular procurement principles to workwear across Europe.

We have also developed a new Criteria for Sustainable Public Procurement in Workwear.

About the action

This action helps public procurers reach their environmental goals by using their buying power to stimulate a circular approach to work wear.

Public sector buyers of work wear frequently make decisions on what to buy and from where. They have great buying power so can help set an example to other buyers, especially in the private sector.

For example, the Dutch Ministry of Defence signed contracts for 100,000 towels and 53,000 overalls with 36% and 14% recycled post-consumer textiles. Like many European governments, they are taking an important step towards supporting sustainable work wear.

What’s involved?

You can help decrease the environmental impact of the clothes you buy by setting specific criteria for your suppliers and encouraging them to develop good practice and introduce innovative ideas into their operations.

Participating in ECAP will help your organisation learn from others:

  • by sharing knowledge and experience within the ECAP network, and
  • joining masterclass sessions in European network meetings.

Participating companies will be able to create strategies, receive training and support, set baseline impacts, share knowledge and measure their success.   

Suppliers of work wear will receive tailored support to help reduce the environmental footprint of clothing production, create sustainable and circular strategies, offer training and support and share knowledge on circular work wear.

Main actions


Summary report on European work wear and corporate wear.  Industry identifying key organisations, developments and recommendations to improve circularity.

Training available for work wear suppliers to develop sustainable and circular strategies.


Development of criteria for circular and sustainable public procurement of work wear.

Creation of 4 masterclasses in European network meetings.