New Eco-Material Made from Coconut Waste
Addressing the increasingly voracious consumer demand for ethical and sustainable material production, Aussie start-up Nanollose has developed the world's first rayon fabric made of biowaste from the food industry.
The material, called Nullarbor, is made by adding microbes to coconut biomass. This naturally ferments the otherwise wasted industry byproduct to create microbial cellulose, which can be used to create a rayon-based material.
This process uses very little land, water or energy, as well as none of the pesticides and fertilisers used to create conventional rayon, which is sourced from wood pulp. According to the brand, this process can also be used to convert wasted biomass from the beer and wine industries, demonstrating the broader potential for this process.
Nanollose chief executive Alfie Germano said: "My vision is for Nanollose to be at the forefront of offering fashion and textile groups a viable alternative, and decreasing the industry's reliance on environmentally burdensome, raw materials."
This process further shows how ingredients and waste products traditionally found in the food industry can have myriad cross-industry applications, as discussed in our report Trans-Industry Ingredients. It also speaks to growing consumer expectations for sustainable textiles in fashion and interiors, as recently covered in our report A Sustainable Journey.