To reduce the fossil-based textile processing and products, efforts have been made to find viable sustainable substitute fibers. Natural fibers like flax, hemp and wool are recommended because of their renewable characteristics, but some natural fibers like cotton are under criticism due to its use of a large amount of water and pesticides. Hemp, one of the oldest and most popular crops for textiles, is renowned for its high-yield without the usage of hazardous chemicals, pesticides and fertilizers. Hemp has tensile strength and durability, as well as other features like breathability and UV resistant. It is widely used in industrial textiles, especially in North America, and for some fashion brands’ eco-friendly collection, such as Stella McCartney and Calvin Klein.

Besides, bio-based and forest-based man-made fibers have also been intensively studied for chemicals reduction, better recycling and biodegradation.

By adopting advanced technologies, sustainable substitutes not only benefit the environment but also can have high-performance functionality. For example, in the 2018 FIFA World Cup, at least 15 out of the total 32 team jerseys were made of Taiwan’s innovative fabrics produced from recycled PET bottles using seamless knitting technology. Jerseys made from such fabrics are claimed to have breathability, moisture resistance and sweat regulating properties1.

  1. [14-09-2018]