Reusable oversleeve reduces the total amount of plastic waste
In the food industry, the sleeves of working jackets get dirty easily. In addition, extremely high hygiene standards are required in the production environment. At the same time, the whole world is fighting against plastic waste. We have together with our customers, developed a sustainable, reusable, and washable oversleeve that helps reduce plastic waste – a true showcase of circular economy.
Protecting the food and the garment
Oversleeves are widely used in food industry and they are an important addition to workwear in many industries: by protecting the easily staining parts of working jackets, they help optimise washing. This, in turn, helps prolong the jacket’s lifecycle. Oversleeves also work as a protective layer against water in wet conditions.
Until now, the oversleeves have been single-use and made from plastic. “The idea for the washable, reusable oversleeves was originally invented by a chocolate producer in Kazakhstan, who was looking for a more sustainable solution,” recalls Irena Kostelanská, Product Manager at Lindström.
The reusable oversleeve has several advantages compared to the plastic alternative. The most obvious is of course the dramatic reduction of plastic waste.
“Last year we used 86,000 disposable plastic oversleeves. Switching to reusable sleeves will help us reduce the amount of waste significantly and at the same time, it will lower our waste disposal costs. Furthermore, textile sleeves cannot be torn as easily as disposable ones, which prevents contamination risks, such as unwanted objects falling into the product,” shares Nataša Žnidarič, Head of Quality Control at Panvita Agromerkur, a Slovenian food company that is piloting the reusable oversleeves with Lindström.
Breathable, user-friendly alternative for plastic
Special effort has also been put on the user experience, which makes the reusable version more functional and comfortable to use. “The oversleeve has a little string for the finger, which makes it fit well in the hand. It also has a rib cuff, protecting the wrist very well. The reusable oversleeve is also longer than the plastic version, making it fit higher above the elbow, which makes it stay in place over the jacket,” Kostelanská explains.
“The employees have seen this as a really positive change. They have appreciated replacing non-breathable plastic to breathable material which has a positive environmental impact. Furthermore, the product being adapted to their needs, has been recognized as additional advantage,” Žnidarič adds.
On top of its superior environmental benefits, the reusable oversleeve is a great showcase of circular economy. After washing and reusing, at the end of its lifecycle, the fabric of the oversleeve can be recycled. “Reusable oversleeves really have multiple advantages that contribute to the environment, hygiene and employee satisfaction,” Žnidarič concludes.
- Reusable, washable unisex oversleeve is used on top of working coats or jackets.
- Industries: the food industry (meat, confectionary, bakery), retail (DIY, gardening, grocery), HoReCa, pharma
- Made from 94% polyester and 6% carbon fibre, for dry and semi-wet conditions
- The product is currently in its pilot phase
- A new fully water-repellent version made from 80% polyester with polyurethan coating will be available in 2023