4 reasons why flax is the fiber of the future

11.05.2017

Flax is one of the most sustainable natural fibers in the world. At Libeco, we believe the least we can do is treat it accordingly throughout the entire production process. We have always made efforts to do this and asked the same from our suppliers.

During the last few years, we reshaped our production process entirely and managed to weave linen without leaving a carbon footprint. Why? Because we want to lead by example when it comes to sustainability and because flax is such a unique natural fiber. Here are another 4 reasons why!

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High Co2 Absorption

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Biodegradable

Flax craves carbon dioxide

This plant really loves CO2. With a little help of the sun, flax plants on one hectare absorb more than a 3,7 metric tons of carbon dioxide and convert it into oxygen. The amount of flax that we need for our annual production equals more than 7.000 acres (= 3.000 km²), absorbing more than 11.000 metric tons of CO2 a year. To give you an idea, this is the equivalent of emission when driving an average car a thousand times around the Earth!

Environmentally friendly

Like all natural fibers, you can recycle or compost flax. Moreover, flax has a natural color with a beautiful flair. Hence, a lot of our tissues do not require extra dyeing. Our organic linen collection is a good example of 100% biodegradable products. Most of these products have been certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard (GOTS).

Little water and no pesticides

Compared to its CO2 absorption, the plant needs very little water. Given the moist and temperate climate of Western Europe, there is no need for irrigation. It has also very few natural enemies, making the use of pesticides obsolete. The farmer relies on Mother Nature’s morning dew for the necessary moist during the retting process.

Not sure what retting, scutching or heckling means? Check out our posts or read the fully imaged book “The Linen Craft”.

No waste

The flax plant has many applications for each part: it is virtually impossible to have waste. The scutcher seperates the fibers from scutching tows and shives. Car manufacturers use scutching tows as basis for door panels. Shives are ideal for chipboards or animal bedding. At our mill, when shearing our fabrics, we immediately collect the shearing dust. This makes a perfect raw material for paper production or insulation. Thanks to flax’s versatility, we have managed to close the production circle. For this, we have been awarded with a Cradle to Cradle certificate, which we wear with proud.

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No irrigation

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No Waste

Carbon neutral weaving made possible

At Libeco, we take energy efficiency very seriously. The sun and the North Sea’s salty breeze power our mill, rendering it as sustainable as possible. For the remaining CO2, we teamed up with co2logic to participate in various projects. Since 2014, Libeco has become entirely carbon neutral.

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