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New Initiatives


ー Recycle / Hanmou ー

Recently, we have been hearing more and more about ethical (materials), eco, recycling, and sustainability. Until now, we have been using organic materials and recycled cotton, but we have also been able to talk about recycling in a way that is different from what we were used to.


Recycled cotton meant reusing the combed cotton from the spinning stage. This has become a staple among casual customers because it is perceived as a yarn with a slightly uneven feel, but officially, recycled cotton meant reuse within the same factory.


In recent years, the word hanmou has emerged. This is a method of turning unused products and cutting waste into thread again. In the world of wool here in Japan, it is known as keshichi and has been used for a long time, but for those of us who work with cotton, I don't think it was used much.

When I went to a spinning factory in Italy a few years ago, efforts had already begun, and they were buying discarded products from Bangladesh, cutting them into smaller pieces, and then adding new cotton (virgin cotton) to recycle cotton.

Normally, it is very difficult to manage the production of heathered yarn (thread with colored cotton). Even if we use virgin cotton, it is very difficult to match the colors for each production. And when using discarded products, there are many issues such as product material, color, attached treatment, and so on.


It is truly a daunting amount of effort.

Normally, we wouldn’t do this because it would be troublesome and difficult. However, new ways to recycle have been created to overcome these difficulties.


What should we do? This is the beginning of the story of FC Planning and hanmou.


ー Recycle 2 / Hanmou 2 ー

When making hanmou thread, where does the raw material come from? That is very important. At FC Planning, one of the crucial points when making this type of thread is whether it has an organic background.
As with anything we develop, stable quality is our top priority. In the case of hanmou, special care must be taken because recycled raw materials are used. Where do the raw materials come from? Will cutting scraps be used? Will the product be recalled?
There are many challenges.
In particular, colored thread, or heathered thread, requires a lot of effort to manage so that the colors do not mix and the color is uniform.


For spinning in Japan:

  • It is possible to collect materials and make it into thread, but only thin heathered thread can be produced.

  • It is possible to collect materials and turn it into fibers and combine it with what you have to make heathered thread.

  • Difficult to adjust colors according to the feeling of the lot. On the other hand, there is also the great advantage of solid traceability.

What we have here is good, but I want to focus on developing the color. For this reason, I turned my attention to overseas operations.

There are heathered yarn factories in Italy and Spain where the culture of color heathering is deeply rooted, so they are good at matching colors. The factory in Spain that we asked to spin this time has the technology to collect cutting waste from Europe, turn it back into fibers, and then turn it into thread. Of course, there are variations between lots, but it is still much better than current Japanese technology. Since it is not possible to spin thread using this type of raw material, virgin cotton is mixed in, but the fact that organic cotton could be used was a big attraction. (The dyed cotton used to make the heathered thread is also organic, which is amazing.)

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After performing quite a bit of research, we teamed up with a Spanish textile company and began selling their fabrics in Japan. However, with China, we abandoned the effort because it was difficult to confirm the traceability of their merchandise. In fact, two years ago, other importers were having issues with false organic products from China. There were similar problems with Xinjiang cotton, so we felt it was somewhat dangerous to sell these products.


Actually, we consider Spanish hanmou to be quite reliable. We toured their factory and were reassured by their cotton management, spinning techniques, and problems with diving.

On the other hand, regarding production, we started with a tour of a raw material factory that has teamed up with a hanmou factory in Aichi Prefecture and is able to spin using hanmou raw material.


Although it is especially difficult to create a supply chain that can boast traceability, we are thinking about continuing to do so in the future.


We would like to turn this thread into exciting, fashionable fabrics that convey our passion to consumers.

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