French technology firm Arkema has developed a new polymer derived from castor oil, which it says can be used to produce high performance textile fibres for use in clothing and footwear.

The bio-sourced technical polymer, called Rilsan PA11, is of 100% vegetable origin - and the fibres spun from it are said to be light weight with a soft touch, bacteriostatic properties and abrasion resistance.

As well as being renewable, Rilsan PA11 production uses lower fossil fuel and has lower CO2 emissions than synthetic, oil-based polymers.