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Finnish fibre company Spinnova has announced a new collaboration with textile professor Dr Nawar Kadi in a move it says will “significantly help” its quest to mass-produce sustainable fibres that can be commercialised.

The company has developed a cellulose fibre process that uses wood and waste stream based fibres instead of cotton and, unlike the toxic viscose process, involves no dissolving or other complex chemicals. The fibre is said to have a uniquely small footprint and presents opportunities to create a circular fibre production system. 

At the end of last year, the firm completed its pilot factory line in Jyväskylä for production of the fibres.

But Spinnova’s CEO Janne Poranen explains: “The kind of technical and industrial textile expertise that we need in commercialising our fibre is not easy to find in Europe”. 

The firm has engaged Dr Kadi, a professor at the University of Borås in Sweden, and an expert in the field of textile technology, who Poranen says will be able to assist with “speeding up bringing our first products to the market”.

Kadi, whose work focuses on textile recycling, fibre, yarn, textile structures, and composites, will assist Spinnova’s product development as a private consulting expert in addition to his current position. The collaboration includes training and consulting in various topics around developing an eco-friendly fibre which Kadi says will “cause a real stir in the textile market”

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Spinnova says the timing of Kadi’s involvement is optimal is it will be focusing on end product development with partnering brands this year. Production will be ramped up in the first quarter of this year, after which it says sufficient amounts of fibre can be produced for customer trials.