Recover was created as a result of serendipity, innovation amid circumstance, and the shared love of the outdoors. The world is constantly changing, and at the beginning and end of each day, it’s up to all of us to decide how we engage with what’s out there in the given moment. For all of us at Recover, we decide to engage by working for a sustainable tomorrow today.
Our story starts in 2008 when Bill Johnston graduated from NC State “obsessed with sustainability” and the outdoors. At the same time, the economic crisis hit, obliterating employment opportunities for many throughout the US. Despite original aspirations of a conventional job in sustainability, Bill picked up work as an outdoor guide taking students on backpacking and mountaineering trips. It was in the mountains and backcountry around the world that he began to think outside the box about involvement in the sustainability field in a jobless market.
In 2009, 23-year old Bill and 50-year-old family friend and veteran textile manufacturer, John Riddle, reconnected when Bill was looking to buy a road bike and John had one to sell. The two began riding together, brainstorming the possibilities of making apparel out of recycled plastic bottles and upcycled cotton. While spinning wheels, the idea for Recover was born with the mission to create the most environmentally-friendly and socially-responsible products possible.
In 2010, Bill and John founded Recover as a sustainable apparel company that would not only reduce plastic pollution in our rivers, oceans, landfills, and adventure playgrounds, but would also give people an easy choice to be part of a solution instead of part of a problem. Our 360° process -- from design to manufacturing to fulfillment -- sources recycled plastic bottles and upcycled cotton for materials; minimizes dyes; significantly reduces the use of chemicals, water, and energy; and completely eliminates plastic packaging.
It’s making a difference. Since 2010, Recover has diverted 7.8 million plastic bottles from the landfill, saved 29.2 million kilowatts of energy, saved 11.8 million pounds of carbon emissions, and saved 2 billion gallons of water. Through the Recover Co Brand program and Recover’s initiatives such as CAREolinas, RAD, Protect Our Parks, and Clean Water we have worked to connect and support artists, communities, and the environment. Partnering with companies, events, nonprofits, and individual customers, together, the community taking action for a sustainable tomorrow today extends far beyond Recover, and we thank you for that.
Ever inspired by y’all, our story continues.