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Lenzing launches new Tencel ecological fibre made from cotton waste fabrics

The company says it is the first manufacturer to offer the new cellulose fibres incorporating recycled materials on a commercial scale.

20th July 2016

Knitting Industry
 |  Lenzing

Knitwear, Knitted Outerwear, Sports/​Activewear, Collections

The new generation of lyocell fibres is an ecological wood-based fibre, combining cotton waste recycling with Lenzing’s pioneering closed-loop Tencel production on a commercial scale. The company says it is the first manufacturer to offer the new cellulose fibres incorporating recycled materials on a commercial scale.

Towards circular economy

Tencel, already known in the market as an eco-friendly fibre, is now achieving another key milestone by creating a highly sustainable fibre from natural resources.

The manufacturer says that Tencel made from cotton waste fabrics will further build Lenzing’s reputation as a leader in the field of environmental technology and will push new solutions in the textile industry towards circular economy by recycling waste.

“For Lenzing, developing circular business models in the fashion industry ensures the decoupling of business growth from pressure on ecological resource consumption. It reduces the need to extract additional virgin resources from nature, and reduces the net impact on ecological resources,” commented Robert van de Kerkhof, CCO of Lenzing.

Ecological fibre

Tencel has already been awarded the EU award for the most eco-friendly production process based on 99.7% closed loop circulation in the production and use of bio-energy.

The renewable raw material of wood from sustainable forestry is another key advantage in terms of sustainability for Tencel, the company reports. According to the manufacturer, the latest next-generation Tencel fibre combines the best of two worlds – recycling cotton waste fabrics and using the most sustainable Tencel technology – to create an ecological wood-based fibre.

The recycling of cotton waste fabrics into virgin textile Tencel fibres aims to offer a practical solution to enable circular economy in the apparel industry.

New approaches to marketing

The company says its new Tencel fibre introduces an innovative approach to marketing. The fibre is not sold directly to yarn or fabric manufacturers. Instead, it will be exclusively offered to leading retailers and brands that in turn could produce their garment collections in the most sustainable way by engaging the right value chain partners. According to Lenzing, this should ensure close co-operation and transparency in the entire textile value chain.

A new type of identification procedure is employed to guarantee transparency for the Tencel fibre. This is said to allow Lenzing to assure retailers that the Tencel fibres in the garment are indeed the most eco-friendly wood-based fibres available.

At the moment, the fibre is being tested with selected brand manufacturers and retailers and is at the point of being introduced to the market.

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