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October 13, 2021

Spinnova, Icebreaker partner on circular merino mid-layer

Sustainable fibre producer Spinnova has teamed up with VF Corp brand Icebreaker to develop circular merino wool mid-layer products.

By Michelle Russell

Spinnova and Icebreaker will use next-generation blends of merino wool and Spinnova fibre for the mid-layer products that can be recycled again and again.

The blend the two companies are now piloting is sustainable and comfortable, and also fully circular. After consumer use, the developed yarn is intended to be separated and reused, with the ambition to get one step closer to circularity and lowering the products’ impact on the environment.

“In addition to [our] shared source of inspiration, the potential to recycle Spinnova into a new fibre again and again makes this disruptively circular. This partnership enables our strategy in developing circular business models and drive forward sustainable design,” says Alistair Smith, director of global product design at icebreaker.

One of Icebreaker’s sustainability goals is to abandon the use of plastic fibres by 2023. In 2020, 91% of the company’s materials were merino or plant-based.

The sustainable and fully circular Spinnova fibre is made without harmful chemicals and uses 99.5% less water and produces nearly 65% less CO2 emissions than cotton production cradle to gate.

“We’re very proud of this collaboration, and excited to keep experimenting how Spinnova can fight climate change as both a sustainable new material and a disruptively circular new material that can be remade over and over again,” adds Spinnova’s CEO and co-founder Janne Poranen.

Spinnova, which recently received the first High Potential Carbon Handprint Innovation award from climate business network Climate Leadership Coalition (CLC), is currently building its first commercial factory in Finland to meet the growing demand for sustainable materials from global textile brands.

The factory producing Spinnova fibre is expected to be completed at the end of 2022, for the joint venture that Spinnova has with its strategic partner Suzano, the world’s largest cellulose producer. Spinnova’s long term business targets include reaching one million tonnes of annual fibre production capacity in the next 10-12 years.

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