Posts filed under ‘Textiles’

NAT to host Farm Day!

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!

11/05/2012 at 12:40 pm Leave a comment

NAT and Lenzing Fibers enter into Joint Development Agreement

 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.

10/05/2012 at 10:00 am Leave a comment

Pamplico Facility: Update in pictures

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.

Lights and ducts stripped from the ceiling

Sorted and ready for recycling

Asbestos removed and contained

 Electrical work

Engineers onsite

Speak to you soon!
The CRAiLAR team

09/05/2012 at 12:55 pm 2 comments

OSU to host Sustainable Textiles Symposium

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.

07/05/2012 at 10:25 am Leave a comment

Harvest Time

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.

Below is a series of snaps that we’ve taken over the past week or so.  We’ve also been getting our growers together and up to date on the latest harvesting methods, equipment and building some good, old-fashioned CRAiLAR team spirit along the way.

Tending the field, assessing the crops’ progress


 Flax in bloom

Flax blossoms close up

Flax seed bolls closeup

Shelbourne Header fixed to the combine

 Shelbourne Stripper Header refresher course

 Setting up the mower (the flax straw will be cut as close to the ground as possible)

 Flax straw mowed and allowed to ret.  Next stop: Pamplico  

Speak to you soon!

The CRAiLAR Team

04/05/2012 at 10:08 pm 2 comments

New CRAiLAR Facility: update in pictures

We’ve been working fervently at our new CRAiLAR facility in Pamplico, SC, since we announced signing the lease in March this year.   As one can imagine, it’s not overnight that you can repurpose a former spinning mill into a newly designed and engineered facility, but we’re doing just that. Engineering the blueprints and purchasing new equipment began a while ago, and now we’re very happy and extremely proud to put these months of planning and hard work into action.  We also thought it would be interesting to show everyone what we’re up to, keeping you updated on our activities and progress along the way.  It’s certainly turning out to be dusty, sweaty, exhausting work, but we’d have it no other way.  There’s nothing we like better than getting some dirt under our fingernails.

 

CRAiLAR’s new home in Pamplico, SC.

 

Our engineering partners hard at work finalizing plans and blueprints.

 

Stack plan for flax bales prior to processing.

 
Our building cleaned out, prepped and ready for construction.

 

We’re raising the roof, so the ceiling comes down first.

 

Adams Electrical on site to ensure we don’t zap ourselves!

 

The dust promises to only get heavier, please stay in touch and look out for further updates… next project: Harvest time.
Speak to you soon!
The CRAiLAR Team

02/05/2012 at 12:40 pm 2 comments

China Likely to Pressure Cotton Prices

Alexandra Wexler reports today that “despite heavy purchases, China still needs millions of tons of cotton to feed its mills”, “traders are positioning themselves for a rise in cotton prices.”  For the full article, click here.

30/04/2012 at 2:28 pm Leave a comment

NAT’S CRAiLAR Flax Earns 100% USDA Certified Biobased Product Label

Naturally Advanced Technologies’ CRAiLAR Flax fibre has earned the USDA’s certified Biobased Product Label.

 “This is an important distinction for CRAiLAR Flax fiber and our partner brands who use it,” said Ken Barker, Chief Executive Officer, Naturally Advanced Technologies.  Consumers may feel secure in making well founded purchasing decisions considering all biobased amount claims are verified by independent labs and monitored by the USDA.  The USDA BioPreffered Program was created in 2002.

The program’s purpose is to increase the purchase and use of biobased products.  The  “USDA Certified Biobased Product” label assures the consumer that the USDA and Federal government stand behind the claims of the vendor and that the product or packaging contains biological ingredients.  Every product that has the “USDA Certitied Biopreferred” label has been submitted to the USDA for testing prior to approval. CRAiLAR is planning to feature the “Biopreffered Label” on certified products and available for consumers on a case-by-case basis at the discretion of partner brands.

Ken Barker, CEO adds to that, “Alongside the performance attributes we have uncovered across product categories, it further shapes the story that our partners can articulate to consumers, and provides another layer of assurance that the product ingredients are shaped by sunlight, rainfall, and low-touch inputs.”  To read the full press release please click here.

20/04/2012 at 12:33 pm Leave a comment

NAT Partners with PVH Corp

This week, we announced that we have partnered with PVH Corp  to evaluate the performance of CRAiLAR Flax fibres in the apparel company’s dress and sports shirts, which will give us a great opportunity to show the performance of the fiber in a category that demands a lot at the consumer level.  PVH has iconic brands like Tommy HilfigerCalvin Klein and IZOD in it’s portfolio, so we are excited to be tested by some of the best in the category.

To read the full press release, including comments from PVH Chairman and CEO, Emanuel Chirico, click here

16/04/2012 at 9:32 am Leave a comment

7 sustainable luxury brands making eco-friendly fashion

Photograph by Jean-Claude Lussier

This month, Elle Canada features seven designers that are making major strides in eco-conscious fashion.  With out minimising the incredible progress brands like Toms and Threads of Change have made for sustainable clothing, these designers are taking what could be a passing trend and making sustainable fashion timeless. VBH Animal Bags, toted by some of the top celebrities, well known for using exotic leather from crocodile or ostrich skin, are coming out with a completely animal-free line of bags.  The first bag will be available this season.  The VBH Brera, the most popular bag in their roster, has been reworked and hand-crafted by artisans in Florence from quilted black ecopelle – a manmade alternative to leather.  When it comes to shoes, materials like  discarded tilapia-skin, cork and raffia are the last you’d expect designer, Manolo Blahnik to use but that is exactly what he’s done.  Partnering with Marcia Patmos (formerly of Lutz & Patmos), he has released a full line of eco-friendly footwear.  The most innovative of the seven has to be Belgian, Bruno Pieters, whose new initiative Honesty truly embodies the definition of the word.  His line of men and women’s clothing which sources recycled, vegan-friendly and sustainable fibres, zippers, buttons and thread exposes the production process for the buyer.  Every garment’s information label will contain a full break down from raw material to finished product and the processes used.  This is an exciting prospect for CRAiLAR and our flax fiber if this were to catch on in the industry.  The price information tag will detail the cost per meter of fabric, how much was ordered and used, how much labor was involved, what the mark-up was, and how the profit was used.  Yves Saint Laurent once said “fashions fade, style is eternal.”  If greener fashion choices offer the same luxury and style that their regular counterparts do hopefully eco-friendly fashion will become less of a current statement and more of a lasting impression.  To read the full story click here.

02/04/2012 at 2:07 pm 1 comment

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