Archive for May, 2012
Field Day went off without a hitch! Lucky for us, the weather cooperated and everyone had a great day out. An introductory meeting was held after the guests arrived at the Pee Dee Research Center.
With Dr. Roy Dodd as the Master of Ceremonies, our distinguished guests were introduced as they spoke and addressed the crowd. A grower’s guide was provided to all attendees and naturally allowed to ask questions along the way. An introduction to CRAiLAR and flax was provided along with an explanation of the field display. Guests were then shuttled to the field to see flax in various stages of growth and harvest along with the support equipment. Equipment representatives were available to answer any questions about machine settings & functions.
A big thank you goes out to everyone who came by to learn more about CRAiLAR and flax, share experiences from the past season, and prepare for the upcoming fall planting. Our informative afternoon was capped off with a delicious dinner, catered by Roger’s Bar B Que. Thank you for the great food and generous hospitality!
Patagonia started The Footprint Chronicles in 2007 back when “corporate transparency” was not a buzz word. Not entirely sure where The Chronicles would lead them they began with the notion that if the information they were receiving had them squirming in their seats they were probably on the right track. Taking a close and personal look at their suppliers and manufacturers Patagonia has invested time, money and their employees into creating the most sustainable and eco-conscientious products for their consumers. Something the industry now likes to call corporate responsibility.
They have since added to and expanded their transparency. A global supply map displays the location of Patagonia’s material sourcing. They even have a reference library which holds all information on the textiles they use, the treatments they go through and the processes as well. With everything from paper use to compostability, Patagonia dedicates itself to leaving nature as uninterrupted as possible and rather themselves exposes the deepest roots of their corporation. As stated in The Footprint Chronicles mission statement we couldn’t agree more that when one company can reduce or eliminate a harm, other businesses will be eager to follow suit.
This coming Tuesday, May 15th, Naturally Advanced will be hosting CRAiLAR’s Farm Day. Held at the Pee Dee Research Center, our fiber flax cropping demo will feature demonstrations including planting, seeding, mowing, raking/tedding and baling.
Growers will be learning more about the production of Fiber Flax. The Naturally Advanced Technologies management team will be there to tell the CRAiLAR story, answer questions, to discuss the unique double cropping opportunity and best practices.
Grow with us!
Naturally Advanced Technologies and the Austria based company, Lenzing Fibers, the world wide leader in cellulosic man made fibres, have entered into a joint agreement. NAT’s CRAiLAR Flax is to be blended with the Lenzing Fibers TENCEL® and Lenzing Modal®.
“This is an important development for CRAiLAR Flax in that, to-date, both of our commercial and exploratory partnership agreements have been focused on how CRAiLAR can blend at varying levels with natural fibers for apparel, home and industrial applications,” said Ken Barker, Chief Executive Officer, Naturally Advanced Technologies. “With Lenzing, we can now evaluate the opportunity to expand the host fibers with which CRAiLAR can blend to identify new performance attributes, applications and industries. This is truly a new frontier for the future of our natural fibers, and working with the global leader Lenzing creates a very powerful industry platform in both sustainability and performance. This partnership will have applications in industry sectors where polyester fibers have been the norm, in addition to our existing applications as a sustainable complement to cotton.”
Lenzing, the only company worldwide to house the manufacturing of each of these three manmade cellulosic fiber generations on an industrial scale, recently released its eco MicroModal® fiber at Paris Fashion Week in February 2012. Shortly following, Lenzing announced a record-setting year at the company with double-digit growth in sales and profits.
“With CRAiLAR Flax and the applications that we have discussed to date, we look forward to taking advantage of its unique attributes, and to extending the range of products we can introduce with CRAiLAR Flax to our global brand partners,” said Peter Bartsch, Head of Marketing Apparel.
The agreement, signed April 24, calls for CRAiLAR to be evaluated according to specifications for any of Lenzing’s cellulosic fiber categories. Lenzing is a pioneer in global fiber markets dating back nearly 75 years. Its raw material for fibers is wood, which is the basis for producing dissolving pulp subsequently processed into cellulose fibers. Its commitment to the principles of sustainability has led Lenzing to be recognized for setting some of the highest environmental standards in the industry. To read the full press release please click here.
Following our last update, we have included a few more pictures documenting the progress we are making at our Pamplico Facility. The inefficient lighting has been stripped from the ceiling and old ductwork has been dismantled. These materials will then be organized and carted off to the recycling center. All asbestos has been removed and contained properly. The lead paint has been encapsulated which brings the building up to code. We’re closing in on next steps and ready for the deliveries and installation of the rigs and supports, creating the “skeleton” upon which all of our equipment will operate.
On May 14th, Oregon State University will be hosting the Sustainable Textiles Symposium. Steve Richardson of Patagonia will discuss the environmental footprint of apparel. Becky Hurd of NIKE will speak about new production techniques. Jay Nalbach of NAT will be shedding some light on sustainable fiber development.
The Symposium will feature seven presentations from West Coast based textile and apparel companies and businesses involved in the manufacturing, dyeing, recycling, certification, labeling, and design of sustainable textiles. Two roundtable discussions will offer students and the community a chance to ask in depth questions of the speakers on sustainability issues.
The Symposium is made possible through a 2012 grant from the Student Sustainability Initiative of OSU and the Department of Design and the Human Environment (DHE).
All presentations will take place in the Austin Auditorium at the Lasells Stewart Center, OSU, Corvallis Campus. All Roundtables will be in a designated Ag room also at the Lasells Stewart Center. To see the full breakdown of speakers and details for the event please click here.
You can visit the OSU Student Sustainability Initiative (SSI) here.
As mentioned Wednesday this week, we would like to keep you updated on how things are going with the flax harvest this spring. At the risk of sounding a bit smug, we can confidently say that our efforts are bearing fruit, seed and straw in our case.
We have been working on growth trials, trying various strains of flax from around the world, and testing the fields for a few seasons, and we are getting very close to harvest in South Carolina. Winter growing is a bit of a challenge but flax is proving itself to be a very robust and hardy plant.