This New Technology Creates Fiber from Cellulose | doGood

Many of our apparel options are based on cotton production today. If Spinnova has its way, tomorrow’s fashion could be made from wheat straw or potato peels. This Finnish startup has developed a new technology that transforms cellulose into usable fiber for the textile industry without the environmental consequences of using old material.

When you visit one of Spinnova’s factories, you’ll see patented equipment grinding up agricultural waste into small fibers. That product gets spun into a wool-like product that is suitable to turn into fabric for apparel.

Water usage with this technology is minimal. Spinnova calculates that it uses 99% less water than cotton growers to create an equivalent amount of product.

It Doesn’t Use Chemicals to Break Down Fibers

Other cellulose-to-textile projects use a series of chemicals to break down tough fibers so that a usable material is available to make clothing. Spinnova uses a 100% mechanical process that produces a continuous filament.

This production process avoids the issues that manufacturers have with polyester and similar synthetics because ongoing fossil fuel use is not needed to create more material. It’s an all-natural product that won’t contribute to oceanic pollution.

Spinnova primarily uses wood pulp and wheat straw, but the startup has also experimented with carrot peels and recycled cotton clothing. That means low-quality materials can become high-quality fabrics using this unique approach.

That means your favorite brands could become a closed-loop production process, allowing you to avoid using raw materials for your future fashion. With water supplies becoming more scarce, this idea could save the world.

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