TESTATA Recovery of textiles

The recovery of textiles

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In this report:

Recovery of textiles

During 2018, Hera SpA began a process to reorganise "textile waste collection", typically meaning used clothing and fabric.

This type of collection had been carried out in the past, on the basis of agreements between the municipalities and the many social cooperatives, private operators, and non-profit organisations, at times working concurrently in individual municipalities. In order to ensure adequate transparency on the collection of used clothing and its social purposes, in 2018 Hera issued special tenders in Emilia open to all market operators, including social cooperatives. The tenders involved an ascending price auction that benefited the share of revenue reserved for the municipalities concerned by the service.

The collection of used clothes provides no margin for Hera SpA and the economic result obtained, net of covering the costs of the service, can be allocated by the individual municipalities either to reduce the costs of the municipal sanitation service for residents (therefore of the TARI or of the quantity-based tariff) or to specific non-profit organizations identified by the municipalities.

A wide range of operators were interested and took part in the tenders. If awarded a contract they were committed to offer a full-time contract to those who had worked for the outgoing operators for at least 90 days.

In 2019, 55% of the resources available to Municipalities were used to reduce municipal sanitation service costs and 45% to local non-profit organisations identified by the Municipalities themselves.

Revenues of Euro 251 thousand were recorded in 2019 for the province of Bologna. Euro 67 thousand of them were allocated to the reduction of service costs and Euro 184 thousand to the following non-profit organizations in descending order of amounts received:

  • San Petronio Onlus Foundation under the Insieme per il lavoro protocol;
  • Associazione Onlus Emporio Solidale di Lavino Samoggia and Emporio Solidale Il Sole di Casalecchio di Reno (BO);
  • Associazione La Strada Onlus at Medicina (BO);
  • "La Compagnia del caffè" Association of Sport and Culture of Molinella (BO);
  • Associazione Auser Volontariato of Bologna and Imola (BO);
  • Monterenzio and Idice Valley (BO) multisport association;
  • Associazione Amici Valsanterno Volunteer Organisation of Borgo Tossignano (BO),
  • Associazione Amici della Terra - Club di Granarolo dell'Emilia (BO)
  • Il Mosaico Coop sociale Onlus of Bubano and Mordano (BO);
  • Associazione Amici degli Animali Onlus of Monghidoro (BO).

In 2019, revenues of Euro 229 thousand were recorded for the province of Modena. Euro 173 thousand of them were allocated to the reduction of service costs and Euro 56 thousand to local non-profit organizations. Ferrara recorded revenues of Euro 90 thousand in 2019, all of which were used to reduce the cost of the service. In 2019, revenues of Euro 34 thousand were recorded for the Rimini-Cesena area, all allocated to the following non-profit organizations in descending order of amounts received: Fondazione Emmaus, Associazione Ciechi and Croce Rossa Italiana.For Ravenna, in 2019, the service for the collection of used clothing only involved a no-charge agreement between Hera, the Municipality and the non-profit, and therefore did not generate additional revenue for Hera.


Bologna Area 251 184 67
Modena Area 229 56 173
Ferrara Area 90 0 90
Rimini-Cesena Area




Total 603 274 330

The initial destination of textile material collected the Hera Group

Considering all the areas served by the Hera Group, the collection of textiles was carried out in 2019 by the following suppliers, listed in descending order of quantity received:

  • HUMANA People to People Italia
  • La Fraternità
  • Nicoletti Giancarlo
  • Città solare Coop sociale
  • Querciambiente Coop sociale
  • Il Solco
  • La Formica

Focus: The reuse and recycling of textiles in the Emilia region

In order to prepare our report on the destination of textile waste, we relied on the support of the two main suppliers contracted through tenders designed to ensure adequate transparency on the collection of used clothing and its social purposes.

Considering the data of the two suppliers awarded the textile collection tenders in Bologna, Ferrara and Modena (93% of the waste collected by Hera Spa), the percentage of re-use of the collected textiles was 56% (almost all of it abroad). 34% of the textiles collected were sent for material recycling, while the remaining 10% was the surplus which was sent for energy recovery or landfill.

Below is an in-depth analysis of the collection of textiles in Emilia. The study was completed thanks to the collaboration of the suppliers La Fraternità and HUMANA People to People.

La Fraternità – Social Cooperative

Humana People to People Italia

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