Australian biotechnology company Nanollose has collaborated with India’s leading global producer of Viscose Staple Fibre, Grasim Industries to commercialise its eco-friendly and sustainable “tree-free” fibres.
The company said that an industrial fibre manufacturer was the last missing link needed to complete Nanollose’s waste to textile value chain. The company believes that its Nullarbor and Nifolium fibres could become a sustainable alternative to conventional plant-derived cellulose fibres. These fibres are grown using eco-friendly microbe-based fermentation process that converts biomass waste products from the beer, wine and liquid food into microbial cellulose — a process that takes less than one month and requires very little land, water and energy.
The innovative technique also overcomes the environmental concerns surrounding the production of traditional viscose rayon, which is derived from wood-pulp treated with hazardous chemicals followed by energy-intensive purification process to source the cellulose required to manufacture rayon. This collaboration of Nanollose with Grasim Industries which is the flagship company of Aditya Birla Group will help Nanollose accelerate the development and commercialisation of its fibres and provide a manufacturing foundation for future textile and clothing brands that use them.
Through this collaboration, both the companies aim to work together to further refine and develop the process to enable fibre production on Grasim’s pilot spinning line. Both the companies aim to enter into a subsequent agreement for the exclusive production of tree free fibres from microbial cellulose on a commercial scale.
According to Alfie Germano, CEO and Managing Director, this collaboration will allow Nanollose to scale with a globally recognised fibre maker and create a number of commercially ready sustainable fibre products that will meet the growing demand from brands seeking eco-friendly alternatives. “Grasim will also bring a high level of credibility when Nanollose begins offering textile and clothing brands with our breakthrough products. We feel this is a natural joining of forces that creates an alliance that will pioneer a new bio-material supply chain along with ticking many large sustainability boxes and increasing market demands,” added Germano.