GBM Fabrics, a Surat-based textile mill, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with an Austrian company to produce plant-based silk.
The Austrian company had invented lyocell filament yarn, an alternative to traditional silk yarn, which is not just cruelty-free but also sustainable.
According to Akash Kirit Marfatia, the Managing Partner of GBM Fabrics, “Traditional silk yarn is obtained from the cocoon of silkworms and is harmful to the environment as it has a lot of emissions. But this yarn is produced by separating cellulose from wood through closed-loop production that leaves no residue behind.”
He said that this yarn could prove highly beneficial for the Indian market as it is suitable for the manufacture of different ethnic fibers like georgette, silk, satin, chiffon, and crepe.
“This will also help us tap opportunities in the export market and the weavers and traders could use this yarn in high-value products. Today many brands are inclining towards sustainable fabric as the textile industry is the second most polluting industry in the world. But the fabric made from this yarn brings style, fashion and luxury along with sustainability,” Marfatia added.
Hoping for a high demand for this fabric in the future, he said, “I have received positive responses from the weavers and designers who were given a sample of this fabric and I expect in the coming 3-4 years, the demand for this fabric will go up.”
The yarn could be woven on a power loom, air-jet loom, and rapier loom as it comes with a higher tenacity over silk. “It is stronger than silk and the fabric made from it is the best man-made biodegradable fabric that starts degrading in 15 days when disposed of,” he added.
With more and more brands opting for cruelty-free and sustainable alternatives, the demand for such materials is sure to go up.