Applied DNA Sciences Inc. has signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding (MOU) with Reliance Industries Ltd. (RIL) to develop and commercialize apparel made from Reliance’s R|Elan GreenGold fabric and Recron GreenGold recycled polyester fiber and filament powered by CertainT.
The collaboration provides for potentially extending apparel manufacturing using R|Elan GreenGold and the use of recycled polyester through Recron GreenGold into consumer and industrial applications in the global markets.
Applied DNA has already demonstrated full end-to-end traceability with its supply chain partners by tagging more than 20 million pounds of recycled polyester, testing hundreds of samples and tracking forensically authenticated products from fiber to finished goods.
Commercial products are sold in over 4,000 U.S. stores, with expansion into international markets before the end of 2019.
Prior to the signing of the MOU, Applied DNA and RIL had tagged recycled polyester at RIL’s facilities in India in successful proof-of-concept studies. Under the MOU, samples will be tested on-site and at Applied DNA’s laboratory in Ahmedabad. The groundwork for commercial scale-up for DNA production for manufacture of CertainT tagged staple fiber and filament yarn is under way. Joint marketing will support sales and business development in U.S. and European markets.
“At Reliance, we believe that sustainability with traceability is a ‘must’ and not a ‘maybe,’” Hemant Sharma, head of the polyester business at RIL, said. “We aim to be an industry leader in sustainability for recycled polyester, and that is why we believe CertainT is the best solution.”
The companies said there is much uncertainty related to the use of post-consumer recycled polyester. To make sustainability product claims, brands and retailers need to be confident their products are marketed and sold as 100 percent recycled are proven with forensic assurance and authentication.
“Our R|Elan brand is growing in apparel and it is used by brands such as Arrow, Lee, Wrangler, Raymond, Anita Dongre, Kappa and many more,” Gunjan Sharma, chief marketing officer of the polyester business at RIL, said.
“These brands now have the option to add CertainT forensic traceability to assure that their products are sustainable, traceable and authentic,” Sharma said. “Without Applied DNA’s proprietary molecular tagging system, the uncertainty and risk is too high, and the burden of proof is much harder for brands and retailers.”
RIL’s Recron GreenGold fiber is made from 100 percent used PET bottles. Sustainable feedstock developments include in-house manufacturing for recycling waste PET bottles into sustainable solutions. Reliance operates a state-of-the-art water effluent treatment process system consistent with a zero-waste concept that all material is either used in process or sold in market.
“Reliance is a key partner for us because you can trust that the post-consumer recycled polyester process is meticulously managed from bottle to fiber, and that scalability is done in a fully controlled environment,” Dr. James A. Hayward, president and CEO of Applied DNA Sciences, said.
“Secure chain of custody is a true value addition to the supply chain,” Hayward added, “and CertainT tagged recycled polyester provides an indelible stamp of approval that many brands and manufacturers need.”