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Sustainability 2017, 9(7), 1187; doi:10.3390/su9071187

Towards Sustainable Clothing Disposition: Exploring the Consumer Choice to Use Trash as a Disposal Option

Department of Textile and Apparel Management, University of Missouri Columbia, Columbia, MO 65203, USA
Received: 9 June 2017 / Revised: 29 June 2017 / Accepted: 30 June 2017 / Published: 6 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability Issues in the Textile and Apparel Supply Chains)
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The textile and apparel supply chain plays an integral role in providing consumers with a continuous supply of apparel that must ultimately be discarded. Viewing the consumer as a player in the process between the supply chain and the post-consumer textile waste stream, this study was designed to explore the consumer apparel disposition process with an eye towards understanding how both supply chain members and post-consumer waste entities can interact with consumers to reduce the amount of apparel discarded in landfills. Hanson’s Consumer Product Disposition Process framework was used to help guide the research. Using a qualitative research approach, semi-structured in-depth interviews were conducted with twenty-four female consumers in the United States to address three main research questions. The findings revealed several themes: use of both “compensatory” and “non-compensatory” choice heuristics in decision making; a “usable life” and the “personal nature” of garments as barriers to non-trash disposal options; and the need to “create awareness” and “provide assurance” to encourage alternative disposal modes. Implications for apparel producers and retailers, secondhand stores and textile recyclers are discussed. View Full-Text
Keywords: apparel 1; disposal 2; landfill 3; trash 4; post-consumer waste 5 apparel 1; disposal 2; landfill 3; trash 4; post-consumer waste 5

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Norum, P.S. Towards Sustainable Clothing Disposition: Exploring the Consumer Choice to Use Trash as a Disposal Option. Sustainability 2017, 9, 1187.

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