Marks and Spencer, the UK retail giant, already achieved some attention on TreeHugger before with their high profile commitment to the environment, known as Plan A (so named, because there is no Plan B). Now they are taking another step towards reducing their environmental footprint by offering £5 ($10) gift vouchers for anyone donating their clothes to Oxfam thrift stores. The vouchers will be valid for one month only, and donated bags of clothing must contain at least one item of M&S; clothing in order to qualify. Unfortunately, given the number of Brits who buy their underwear at M&S;, certain types of garment will not qualify:
An M&S; spokeswoman said that while all clothing donations would be welcomed, vouchers would not be issued for M&S; lingerie, underwear, swimwear, hosiery and socks. She added: "This is for health reasons and because for obvious reasons there is not a great deal of demand for personal items of this nature." She said there was nothing to stop people bringing in a series of small bags to guarantee a succession of vouchers, but the company would be "monitoring the scheme very carefully to detect any signs of abuse".
We are encouraged to see a retailer putting incentives into greening the end-of-use options for their products, especially since reusing cotton clothing can yield energy savings of up to 97.4%. A spokesperson for Ethical Consumer magazine told the Guardian they would like to see M&S; also put effort into using recycled fabrics in their own products, though as far as we can tell they are already making moves in this direction. As always, our guide on How to Green Your Wardrobe holds some useful tidbits for folks wanting to go green in style. ::Marks and Spencer::via The Guardian::