Fortum, a major European energy company building new business options in the circular economy, along with the sustainable fiber technology company Spinnova have recently showcased the world’s first clothing made from agricultural waste, na-mely wheat straw, at the Textile Exchange Sustainability Conference in Vancouver.
The prototype, being composed of a knitted t-shirt, a jacket and skirt made of a woven fabric on organic cotton warp material, is unique due to its extremely low environmental impact from raw material extraction, processing and manufacture, verified by life-cycle analysis (LCA).
Spinnova’s technology, presently in a piloting phase, turns micro-fibrillated cellulo-se (MFC) directly into fiber mechanically without any dissolving or harmful che-mical processes, which also means that Spinnova’s technology can be applied
to various biomasses without further technology development. Now, Fortum and Spinnova seem to plan to establish sustainable fiber production at Fortum’s future biorefineries that will use residual biomasses such as agro waste. It is stated that the refineries will be based on fractionation technology, enabling highly resource-ef-ficient utilization of wheat straw and resulting in significantly lower environmental impact compared to other processing technologies.