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TreeToTextile invests in demonstration plant in Sweden

TreeToTextile, owned by H&M Group, Inter IKEA Group, Stora Enso, and LSCS Invest, is building a demonstration plant in Sweden, in a next step towards commercialising a new sustainable textile fibre, with scalable technology and low manufacturing cost. Being built with investment of €35 million, the plant will make sustainable textile fibres available to all.

Sustainable textile fibres are in growing demand. TreeToTextile intends to enable brands, companies, and others with a progressive agenda, to have access to sustainable textile fibres.

TreeToTextile offers a new technology to produce biobased textile fibres with a low environmental footprint at an attractive cost level. The new fibre is a regenerated cellulosic fibre, produced from renewable and sustainably sourced raw materials from the forest.

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TreeToTextile’s strong sustainability performance has been confirmed by a third party verified Life-Cycle-Assessment study. Looking at the sustainability targets, the new technology would mean less use of energy, chemicals and water when benchmarked to the production of conventional fibres. The process has been designed to have low energy demand and low chemical need. It is engineered to suit large scale production and includes a recovery system for reusing chemicals.

“Our technology has the potential to reduce the environmental footprint of the textile industry significantly. With our owners’ support, innovative agendas, know-how, and size, we assess that TreeToTextile can play an important contributing part globally, in enabling the textile industry to become sustainable and circular,” says TreeToTextile’s CEO Sigrid Barnekow.

TreeToTextile is now investing to construct a demonstration plant for upscaling the process technology. The cost is €35 million, which is funded with an investment of €27.4 million from the owners, H&M Group, Inter IKEA Group, Stora Enso, and LSCS Invest, and a grant of €7.6 million from the Swedish Energy Agency. The plant will be established at Stora Enso’s Nymölla mill in southern Sweden, and the construction will start in spring 2021. The production capacity will be 1 500 tons fibre per year.

“The key to creating real change is cooperation. We are a young organisation and at the beginning of our operations, but by investing in a demonstration plant, we are finally on the go. With it we are turning years of R and D into reality to increase the biobased share on the textile market to support climate action. That is why this is an important point in time, not only for TreeToTextile,” says Roxana Barbieru, chairwoman of TreeToTextile / vice president, Emerging Businesses and Alliances Management, Biomaterials at Stora Enso.

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