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Fibres & Textiles

Fibres & Textiles Blended fabric with PLA Photo courtesy Jiangsu Danmao Textile Co. PLA/wool blend for clothing Jiangsu Danmao Textile Co., Ltd., an eco-conscious company with manufacturing facilities in Jiangsu Province, China, specializes in producing wool fabrics for high-end fashion. The company recently developed a new range of wool fabrics blended with Ingeo PLA fibers. Ingeo fiber is an economic and lower-carbon-footprint alternative to polyester for blending with wool. The PLA/ wool fabric will be used for uniforms and informal and corporate wear. Jiangsu Danmao Textile Company has been investing in clean manufacturing technology for more than a decade and has made major investments in reducing water consumption and landfill waste. Its emphasis on being a leader in sustainable manufacturing led research and development personnel to explore alternatives to polyester. Ingeo met the firm’s criteria for performance, cost, and reduced carbon footprint. The biopolymer also reduced the company’s exposure to sourcing non-renewable materials. Jiaxing Runzhi Wenhua Chuangxiang Co Ltd is located in the Zhejiang province of China. The company recently developed a series of Ingeo PLA based products including underwear, camisoles, t-shirts, and infant’s wear, all of which are destined for the Chinese domestic market and sold under the YUSIRUN brand name. The new fabric is a blend of Ingeo, Tencel, nylon, and spandex. The owner of the firm Mr. Shang Jia lead an indepth product development effort focused on utilization of renewable materials. The company wanted to offer products that would appeal to environmentally concerned Chinese consumers, have measurable environmental benefits, and look and feel great. According to company officials, “The outstanding features of this garment collection include sensational touch, good drape, easy care, quick drying, excellent wicking performance, and low odor retention. These garments are comfortable and hypoallergenic.” Website: 20 bioplastics MAGAZINE [05/12] Vol. 7

Application News Biodegradable toothbrush FRISETTA Kunststoff GmbH (based in Schönau, Germany) recently introduced their new monte-bianco NATURE, a toothbrush with a replaceable head for adults. The handle and head are made from plastic which is biodegradable according to EU 13432/EN and US ASTM D6400 standards, and has natural bristles. The project was realized by a team from three companies, namely Frisetta Kunststoff, A. Schulman GmbH (Kerpen, Germany) and API S.P.A. (Mussolente, Italy) using API´s biodegradable thermoplastic polymer APINAT. The packaging of this product is also in line with the green concept. The plastic cover is made from biodegradable and compostable corn-starch based PLA. The back of the package consists of FSC-certified paperboard. The product is available in special bio shops in Europe. For more than 60 years Friseatta have been producing oral care products of a high quality at their location in the Southern Black Forest in Germany. The latest state-of-theart technology allows them to protect the environment whilst simultaneously producing technologically advanced and high quality products in their manufacturing process. With this new product Frisetta follows a general environmentally-friendly approach. The warm water from the cooling system used for cooling the production machines is then used for heating the rooms in the building during the winter. The cooled water then flows back into the production system. In summer, the water is cooled in a deep, in-house well. The required electricity is derived from 100% renewable energy from their neighbour, the Schönau (EWS) electricity generating plant Frisetta´s target is the constant improvement of their products and product range. The innovations of the past few months that complete the monte-bianco range are only a beginning. They are currently working not only on product optimisation but also on more new developments. MT Green foam profiles NMC, headquartered in Eynatten, Belgium recently presented NOMAPACK ® Green, the first packaging profile that is certified as biosourced, made using renewable materials and 100% recyclable. With globalisation and easier transport, companies send their products all around the world. Fragile products need to be protected with reliable, lightweight, compact packaging. In this field, practical criteria are no longer the only deciding factors, and today, the sustainable dimension of a product is becoming more and more important. NMC decided to focus on renewable resources to create the Nomapack Green profile. The company has developed a process technology to produce profiles from renewable materials with similar properties to the traditional Nomapack profiles made from petroleum-based polyolefins; including foamability, excellent shock absorption and long-lasting mechanical properties. Nomapack Green is 100% recyclable. The raw material for the production of Nomapack Green profile has been developed by polymer experts from NMC’s Research and Development unit. The so-called NMC NATUREFOAM is a polyethylene blend with more than 30% renewable raw materials. It has been tested by the Vinçotte International Institute, who certified it with one star for its level of non-fossil fuel materials (between 20 and 40% of its components come from renewable sources). The availability of these components is not limited over time, so the production of Nomapack Green profiles is less dependent on the fluctuating price of petroleum-based raw materials. Last but not least, no genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are used in the composition of the Nomapack Green profile. The cultivation of these plant-based materials does not compete with food production and does not cause any problems of access to food for local residents. With Nomapack Green, NMC is investing more than ever in the development of sustainable products. As a pioneer in this field, the company has not used chlorofluorocarbon (CFC) and hydrochlorofluorocarbon (HCFC) gases in the production of its products for over 20 years, putting it at the cutting edge of the synthetic foam industry. Over time, it has honed its choice of materials as well as its environmentally friendly manufacturing processes so that now a large proportion of its product range is recyclable. MT bioplastics MAGAZINE [05/12] Vol. 7 21

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