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The Sustainability of Organic cotton and GM cotton – Part 1 of 2

Organic cotton and genetically modified cotton (GM cotton) are opposite concepts to make cotton more sustainable. In that sense it is the target to reduce water and energy consumption of cotton agriculture and processing, and to reduce the amount of potentially hazardous chemicals, such as pesticides, released into the environment. A lot of totally contracting data can be found to support either one of the concepts, depending how things were examined and by whom studies were funded. This article tries to bring to light some of the issues related to cotton, GM and organic. Continue reading

Enzymes – an alternative for wet processing of denim

Denim wet processing using chemicals is one of the pollution causing processes in thetextile mills. Textile garment manufactures use numerousbers of acutely toxic chemicals of which many are classified as hazardous. Several denim brands have committed to eliminate the release of all hazardous chemicals throughout its entire supply chain and products. In response to the Greenpeace Detox campaign, a group of major apparel and footwear brands and retailers made a shared commitment to help lead the industry towards zero discharge of hazardous chemicals (ZDHC) by 2020.This report gives an overview of the use of enzymes compared to traditional applications in the garment process of denim fabrics. Continue reading

Greenpeace launches another attack on sportswear brands concerning hazardous chemicals

Just weeks before the start of the football World Cup 2014, a newly released Greenpeace report, building up on earlier activities under the detox campaign, found a variety of potentially hazardous chemicals (PFOA, NPEO, and more) in sportswear products of adidas, Nike and Puma. Toxic chemicals were found in almost all football boots, gloves and shirts which were examined. Continue reading

3D printing of textiles – part 1. Haute Couture and technical challenges

3D printing is seen as potential technology breakthrough that may radically change manufacturing processes in many industries, put whole business models at question and create new ones. However, in textile manufacturing 3D printing is still at a tiny niche and exploratory stage. We show examples of the already available and known products and trends. In future articles we will look closer at the emerging technology solutions in 3D printing of textiles. We will present the common 3D printing technologies and discuss how to overcome some of the obstacles for 3D printing of textiles. We will try to answer the questions: Can 3D printing really play a serious role in textile manufacturing? Continue reading

Leading Italian ink jet printing company MS bought by US corporation Dover

The US corporation Dover, a Fortune 500 company, announced the acquisition of the Italian company MS who is the technology leader in digital ink jet printing for textiles. MS became famous with the LaRio printer, the fastest ink jet printer for textile printing. Continue reading

Achieving Sustainable Development through Industrial Ecology

Sustainable development integrates social, economic and environmental development. It is defined by the Brundtland Commission as “economic and social development that meets the needs of the current generation without undermining the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” It does not stand in the way of future generations meeting their needs. Industrial Ecology, being a relatively new field, offers methods to assist corporations and organizations to carry out sustainable operations. The interactions between industries and their environment forms industrial ecology which does contribute to sustainable development. It tries to reduce the human impact on nature and aims at sustainable development. Continue reading

Enzymes – an eco-friendly alternative for the textile industry?

With the increasingly important requirement for textile manufacturers to reduce pollution in textile production, the use of enzymes in the chemical processing of fibers and textiles is rapidly gaining wider recognition. Enzymes are non-toxic and eco-friendly. They can be safely used in a wide selection of textile processes such as de-sizing, scouring, bleaching, dyeing and finishing, where the traditional alternatives are very harsh chemicals whose disposal into the environment causes many problems. The article gives an introduction to enzyme technology. Continue reading

Finally the digital revolution in textile ink jet printing has started

Digital (ink jet) printing combines many advantages: easy coloration, direct printing off the computer screen, no screens, no colour kitchen, and attractive designs. Due to latest advances in printing speed technology a significantly accelerated growth of the technology is expected. The article outlines the drivers in this exiting market. Continue reading

The risks and alternatives of APEO and NPEO in textiles part 2

The second part of this article series gives information about alternative products, global regulations and environmental advantages, after the ban of APEO in Europe. Moreover, the results of the Greenpeace research about nonylphenol ethoxylate residues in textiles are discussed opposite the joined efforts of the ZDHC project. Continue reading

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