Pre-project for BioInnovation’s textile initiative 2021

In 2020, BioInnovation took the next step towards a new major initiative for bio-based textiles. In a preliminary project focusing on cellulose-based products from forest raw materials and recycled goods, opportunities and development needs in Sweden were to be evaluated and prioritised. The goal was to devise a strategic project that could contribute to Swedish industry being better prepared to meet an increased demand for, and use of bio-based materials with the sights set on 2026. 

Exciting developments are taking place in the Nordic region in textiles from cellulose, and especially from forest raw materials. Sweden has also taken significant steps regarding recycling textile fibres. In the spring of 2020, the consulting firm Trossa was commissioned by BioInnovation to produce an area analysis for bio-based circular textiles (link in Swedish). As a continuation of this work, a pre-project was launched in two parts. 

The pre-project was to give BioInnovation a good basis for the next major initiative in the textile area. 

– We will investigate the most important development issues where companies want to contribute, propose a concrete project structure and a direction for a future strategic initiatives, said Hanna de la Motte, RISE, the project manager for the part of the project dealing with filament and fibre production in Sweden. 

– Through close cooperation between the two pre-projects, we will ensure that any future investment from BioInnovation contributes precisely where we see the greatest potential for increased value creation. This is from a Swedish perspective, both in terms of increased domestic production but also in opportunities for cellulose textiles to gain market shares in new areas of application , says Erik Perzon, IVL, who is leading the sub-project on the cellulose fibre’s range of properties and application areas. 

Subproject A – Filament and fibre manufacturing in Sweden 

Hanna de la Motte, RISE.

Hanna de la Motte, project leader, RISE.

In order for Swedish innovation and industry to meet an increased need for cellulose-based filaments and fibres, various changes and optimisations need to be made in collaboration, across the whole value chain. Mapping of the availability and properties of the cellulose-based raw material is needed. There is also a need for coordination and the potential development of technology and process solutions, as well as test and demonstration facilities for processing the raw material into finished products. End products will need to be designed based on market potential and circularity. 

Project leader:
Hanna de la Motte, RISE

Subproject B – Range of properties and application areas of cellulose fibres 

Erik Perzon

Erik Perzon, project leader, IVL.

The subproject would provide a proposal for future projects in bio-based and/or cellulose-based textiles. The focus was on innovation opportunities within the scope of the fibre’s properties, and the market potential for greater use, that is, a broader application profile for cellulose textiles. The subproject took into account the areas where a Swedish project was expected to have the greatest potential for international impact, and therefore the project also considered the limitations. 

Project leader:
Erik Perzon, IVL Swedish Environmental Research Institute

The pre-project was carried out between 19 October and 31 December 2020.