The new natural fibers
Biotechnology opens up new frontiers
Technologies - MU Sustainable Innovation
Despite always being appreciated by the leading brands, natural fibers now account for only a third of the world fiber production. However, their contribution to sustainable fashion is indispensable. While aware that 'Natural does not automatically mean ecological', in recent years producers have heavily invested in reducing the environmental impact of processes and products, favoring, for instance, raw materials coming from organic farming. Nowadays, traditional materials (cotton, wool, silk, linen) are joined by new materials, a result of the circular economy and the bioeconomy: fibers obtained from biotechnological processes capable of enhancing the properties of agricultural products and waste to make new fibers. In some cases, these are niche productions, but investments in research suggest interesting possibilities.