Asos has partnered with the London College of Fashion’s Centre for Sustainable Fashion (CSF) to launch a sustainable training program for its design team.

The trial will see 15 members of the company’s design team work with CSF to explore concepts and applications of circular design through a series of half-day workshops and discussions.

The pilot course is part of the 2020 Circular Fashion Commitment that the retailer pledged to achieve at the Copenhagen Fashion Summit in 2017.

“With this pilot we’re making sure our designers have the knowledge and skills they need to put sustainability and circularity into practice,” Vanessa Spence, design director at Asos, said. “It’s a vital step on our journey to designing products with circularity in mind right from the start, which will ensure that they are made responsibly, remain in use for as long as possible once they’re sold, and don’t cause unnecessary waste at the end of their lives.”

The program follows another announcement in early June 2018 that saw Asos pledge that by January 2019 it would no longer sell any silk, cashmere, mohair or feathers on its platform.

At the time, PETA’s EVP Tracy Remain said: “PETA applauds ASOS for leading the charge for compassion in fashion. In response to PETA’s campaigns, consumers are changing the face of the industry by demanding that designers and retailers ditch animal-derived materials in favor of cruelty-free alternatives that look great without causing suffering.”

Established fashion companies are increasingly leaning on the expertise of educational institutions to establish better practices across design and sustainability. In January this year, Kering and the London College of Fashion also worked together to develop an open-access digital course in luxury fashion and sustainability. The course aims to not only strengthen sustainability education in the industry but also promote the practice to a wider audience.