Bananatex Crafts Compostable Jerseys from Abacá Banana Plants

Editorial TeamEditorial Team
January 5th, 2024

Bananatex revolutionizes the textile industry with its eco-friendly jersey fabric made from Abacá banana plants, earning recognition at the Dezeen Awards 2023 and showcasing the company's ongoing commitment to sustainable fashion.

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Bananatex, a pioneering textile company committed to sustainable practices, has revolutionized the industry with its innovative and eco-friendly jersey fabric derived from the fibers of Abacá banana plants. This remarkable material, recognized in the material innovation category of the prestigious Dezeen Awards 2023, represents the latest evolution of Bananatex's commitment to sustainable fashion, building on their initial fabric launch in 2018.

The process begins with the extraction of fibers from Abacá plant stalks, which are then transformed into a pulp through a meticulous cooking process. This pulp is subsequently converted into yarn using a paper-making technique based in Taiwan, where it is knitted, assembled, and crafted into the final jersey product.

Bananatex's dedication to environmental responsibility is evident as the Abaca fabric, Cradle to Cradle Certified Gold, boasts the ability to decompose within 10 weeks in industrial composts and 16 weeks in marine water, making it a true champion in biodegradability.


Bananatex's Circular Revolution

Not content with merely producing a sustainable material, Bananatex is actively closing the product's technical cycle by facilitating the return of used Bananatex fabric to the pulping process. This groundbreaking approach enables the creation of new paper and yarn, establishing a circular production process that significantly minimizes waste and further emphasizes the company's commitment to environmental stewardship.

Bananatex's ambitious goal extends beyond product innovation; the company aims to draw attention to the critical aspects of raw material utilization, natural resource preservation, and the overall life cycle of garments. By doing so, Bananatex seeks to redefine the discourse on sustainability within the textile industry.

Impressively, Bananatex fabric boasts tearing and abrasion strength that ranks "amongst the highest in nature," positioning it as a potential substitute for traditional cotton and synthetic fabrics. The latest iteration of the fabric is celebrated for its enhanced softness and increased versatility, expanding its applications within the realm of apparel. Overcoming challenges in the development process, Bananatex shared that creating a jersey with washing stability and elasticity comparable to existing materials posed a significant hurdle.



Sustainability and Socio-Economic Impact through Abacá Banana Plant Fabric

However, their dedication to innovation prevailed, resulting in a fabric that not only meets industry standards but surpasses them in terms of sustainability and performance. Derived from the Abacá plant, native to the Philippines, Bananatex's fabric comes with the added benefit of requiring no pesticides, fertilizer, or additional water during cultivation. By cultivating Abacá plants in a natural ecosystem, Bananatex supports reforestation efforts, enhances biodiversity, and uplifts the livelihoods of local farmers and communities in the Philippines.

These communities, through regular harvesting of fibers, generate a stable source of income, exemplifying Bananatex's commitment to fostering positive socio-economic impacts. Bananatex stands at the forefront of sustainable textile innovation, demonstrating that fashion and environmental responsibility can coexist harmoniously. Their compostable jersey made from Abacá banana plants not only showcases cutting-edge technology but also sets a new standard for ethical and environmentally conscious practices within the fashion industry.