Bestseller's Jack & Jones tests British firm's new plant leather
Bestseller is to test a “new innovative leather alternative” that’s plant-based, and claimed to be recyclable, suitable for composting and can be used to make sneakers.
It’s collaborating with British firm Biophilica, which is developing a material called Treekind. Bestseller’s menswear brand Jack & Jones will test it.
The news comes at a time when the fashion giant is looking at multiple different ideas that could become commercially viable alternatives to leather. For instance, its investment arm Invest FWD announced a link-up with VitroLabs just seven months ago, based on the latter’s ability to “grow leather in just a few weeks via cultured laboratory cells from animals”.
Of the Biophilica partnership, Bestseller’s Innovation Manager Camilla Skjønning Jørgensen said: “Leather processing has a high climate impact, but we must also make sure that the alternatives don’t just create another environmental problem such as high plastic content or reduced quality and durability.”
Treekind contains no plastic and is formulated with lignocellulose from leaves, plus a natural binder that’s designed to break down in soil or water. The ambition has been to create a recyclable material that can also be composted when the product reaches its end-of-life.
The Danish company also said “collaborative projects that combine development with manufacturing knowledge and methods are crucial for start-ups to be able to scale up and bring materials to market with brand partners”.
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