Icebreaker, Spinnova partners to develop circular SPINNOVA-merino wool products

YarnsandFibers News Bureau 2021-10-13 10:22:39 – Finland

Finnish sustainable material company, Spinnova has partnered with VF brand Icebreaker® to develop circular midlayer products using next-generation blends of merino wool and the highly sustainable SPINNOVA® fiber, which can be recycled again and again.

The Icebreaker and Spinnova journeys originate from a shared vision that nature provides the answers: Icebreaker was founded to provide natural alternatives to synthetics, while Spinnova's technology is inspired by nature; how spiders weave their web.

Spinnova and Icebreaker have begun their joint sustainability journey by signing a product development agreement for SPINNOVA®-merino wool midlayer materials, which will have a minimal environmental footprint and high performance.

Spinnova and Icebreaker are now piloting a sustainable and comfortable midlayer blend for midlayer products that is sustainable and comfortable, and also fully circular. The designed yarn is meant to be separated and reused after customer use, bringing the items one step closer to circularity and reducing their environmental impact.

Icebreaker is a pioneer in the business when it comes to sustainability, with ambitious targets including eliminating the usage of plastic fibers by 2023. By 2020, merino or plant-based materials would account for 91% of Icebreaker's materials. This collaboration is a fantastic match between Icebreaker's high sustainability standards and Spinnova's innovation, which wants to change the way textiles are manufactured around the world.

Alistair Smith, Director of Global Product Design at icebreaker, said that they were pleased to learn about Spinnova's method of fiber spinning that follows nature's natural processes because nature is our hero and source of inspiration. Aside from the shared source of inspiration, the ability to recycle SPINNOVA® into a new fiber several times makes this disruptively circular. Their objective of building circular business models and driving forward sustainable design is enabled by this partnership.

SPINNOVA® fiber is created without toxic chemicals and is completely circular. From birth to grave, SPINNOVA® fiber uses 99.5% less water and emits roughly 65% fewer CO2 emissions than cotton. The fibers can be simply be remade mechanically, again without harmful chemicals or quality loss, thanks to the mechanical mechanism Spinnova uses to harness its raw source, wood pulp. SPINNOVA® fiber has excellent insulating properties and will be a great companion for merino wool.

According to the Textile Exchange's Preferred Fibres and Materials Report 2020, SPINNOVA® fiber is one of the few members of a new "Other plant-based fibers" class since it is created in a simple and clean procedure without chemical dissolving, unlike man-made cellulosic fibers.

Janne Poranen, CEO and co-founder of Spinnova, said that they're really proud of this cooperation, and they're looking forward to continuing to explore how SPINNOVA® can battle climate change as both a sustainable new material and a disruptively circular new material that can be created over and over again.

This collaboration's partners are working on an entirely new substance that has never been seen before. Icebreaker is at the forefront of sustainable development, as part of a larger movement of textile industry players generating new circular and sustainable alternatives, as evidenced by this bold and adventurous cooperation. Spinnova, for example, recently announced a partnership with The North Face®, another VF Corporation subsidiary like Icebreaker.

To fulfill the growing demand for sustainable materials from worldwide textile brands, Spinnova is constructing its first commercial production in Finland. The factory that will create SPINNOVA® fiber for Spinnova's joint venture with Suzano, the world's largest cellulose producer, is projected to be finished by the end of 2022. Spinnova's long-term commercial goals include establishing a production capacity of one million tonnes of SPINNOVA® fiber per year in the next 10-12 years.

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