Fashion for Good unveils Dyestuff Library pilot to boost use of eco dyes
Fashion for Good (FFG) has unveiled the Dyestuff Library, a pilot digital tool “enabling partners to choose dyestuff based on competitive performance as well as environmental metrics for commercial use”.
The aim is to “accelerate the shift from harmful chemistry to alternative options by enabling visibility and access to innovations”.
The Dyestuff Library means “15 selected dyestuff innovations will participate in lab and pilot trials”. They’ll go through extensive compliance and toxicity testing to ensure they’re safe for commercial use.
The library is supported by FFG’s corporate partners Adidas, Inditex, Bonprix and Otto International (both part of the Otto Group), Bestseller, Target, Patagonia, Paradise Textiles, Welspun, and newest partner Shahi Exports, along with other supporting stakeholders.
“We need dyeing innovation that focuses on less wasteful practices, reduces water usage and is less energy consuming,” said Camilla Skjønning Jørgensen, Bestseller’s Innovation Manager.
“To reach this, it is essential that the fashion industry supports initiatives with an upscaling perspective so new solutions can reach a commercial level.”
FFG said that textile dyes were derived from nature before synthetic dyes revolutionised the textile industry in the 19th century. Today, 90% of all clothing is synthetically dyed, “but the toxic effects and ecological impact are extremely harmful to humans and the environment. Over the years, a significant amount of effort has gone into phasing out harmful chemistry and there are consistent efforts to develop non-hazardous chemistry”.
With a current situation in which many alternative dyes are available from natural sources such as plants, microorganisms, algae and recycled materials, the lack of clarity on their performance and scale “makes it difficult for the industry to switch to these sustainable options”.
Testing and validating the performance of the dyes and pigments on various textile substrates in the pilot programme will be supported by supply chain partners Paradise Textiles and RDD Textiles, University and labs partners NimkarTek, Institute of Chemical Technology and UNICAMP. And participating partners “will support this project with their expertise and encourage next steps for industry implementation”.
“The shift towards a more sustainable industry happens when we share existing knowledge and give access to innovations with one another. Collaboration, not competition, will allow the industry to truly transform,” said FFG’s MD Katrin Ley.
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