Sustainable Fibres for Fashion and Textile Manufacturing - Chapter 1: Traditional fibres for fashion and textiles: Associated problems and future sustainable fibres

Elsevier, Rajkishore Nayak, Lalit Jajpura, Asimanda Khandual, 1 - Traditional fibres for fashion and textiles: Associated problems and future sustainable fibres, Editor(s): Rajkishore Nayak, In The Textile Institute Book Series, Sustainable Fibres for Fashion and Textile Manufacturing, Woodhead Publishing, 2023, Pages 3-25, ISBN 9780128240526,
Rajkishore Nayak

The manufacturing of fashion and textiles starts from the basic raw materials, which are the fibres. Textile fibres are either derived from nature (e.g., plant and animal fibres or natural fibres) or from petroleum resources (synthetic or manmade fibres). Harvesting of some of the traditional natural fibres such as cotton uses a large amount of water and pesticides or sericulture of silk by killing the silkworm is at odds when sustainability is considered. Similarly, the extraction and use of synthetic fibres is not sustainable due to the fibres are non-renewable and non-biodegradable when they reach their end-of-life. This chapter discusses the problems associated with harvesting the traditional natural fibres or manufacturing the synthetic fibres, which have high detrimental impact on the environment. Various fibres such as cotton, wool, silk, polyester, nylon, rayon and acrylic will be considered, and the associated difficulties will be discussed. Various environmental problems such as water and air pollution; generation of solid waste, use of a large amount of fresh water, use of hazardous toxic chemicals and generation of wastewater are some of the problems associated with the production of textile fibres, which will be discussed in this chapter. Due to the increased global awareness to save the planet earth, many leading fashion brands are trying to switch to new sustainable fibres. This chapter highlights the problems associated with some of the important traditional natural and synthetic textile fibres used for the manufacturing of fashion and textiles.