Texworld Spotlights Sustainability & Millennial Style Functionality

Left: New bio-based textiles include fruit, veggies and fish skin. Right: Sample t-shirt printed with Hemp Black/Ink.

A crop of new plant-based material developments drew considerable attendee interest at Texworld USA held in NYC earlier this week. Show goers crowded around displays of textile products made from citrus, pineapple, mushroom, coconut, hemp and ground cork that along with sustainability attributes also feature appealing texture, aesthetic and performance value.

Some examples of these next gen eco materials include MuSkin, a 100 percent vegetable peel alternative to animal leather; Orange fiber, tagged as the “world’s first sustainable citrus fabric;” and Pinatex, made from pineapple leaf fiber.

On the hemp front, steady progress continues. Two new developments to watch going forward are Hemp Black and the Mirum brand by Natural Fiber Welding (NFW). Mirum is a performance plant-based material that uses 100 percent natural inputs and is free of petroleum-based plastics. Additionally Mirum can be recycled back into itself. NFW Mirum features hemp, but also other plants such as coconut. Hemp Black is ink that uses hemp harvested in Kentucky that is processed into a carbon rich hemp charcoal and then gets milled into a fine powder. The organic, bio-based black pigment is combined with a water base to create Hemp Black/Ink.

Tech for Today’s Millennials & Gen Z-ers

Textile firms are developing technologies with the younger generation in mind with functionalities that tap into the Millennial and Gen Z generations’ new criteria of clothing based on their modern day values.

Research confirms that Milliennials are not spending on traditional big-ticket items, like homes and cars, but instead are happily swiping their credit cards on renting scooters and touring Vietnam. “They serve as a role model generation for a new way of consumerism,” explained Greg Vas Nunes, chairman, CEO, TTG Inc., who highlighted product quality, uniqueness, longevity, sustainability and versatility as high value for this massive consumer demographic. “Millennials and Gen Z want technology that responds to the individuals’ body and individuals’ circumstances.”

At a seminar titled, Experience & Me, Vas Nunes introduced his company’s Airadigm product, a microventing plasma technology, created and produced in the USA, that is waterproof, extremely breathable and engineered to provide I-Climate comfort. “The features allow individuals to achieve their personalized body comfort zone, no matter their activity level of environment,” Vas Nunes offered.

Karel Williams, global business segment leader, DuPont, provided the seminar audience with information on DuPont’s latest innovative odor prevention ingredient brand INTELLIFRESH. Intellifresh odor protection technology prevents growth of odor-causing bacteria on fabrics, making them stay clean and fresher longer. “The technology is relevant to today’s generations preferences and delivers solution to make their active lifestyle easier,” said Williams.