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Nonwovens/​Converting

Enhanced Veocel fibre for flushable wipes

Improving processability and machine efficiency in wet-laid nonwovens production.

6th December 2023

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Lenzing, Austria

Medical/Hygiene

Lenzing has launched upgraded Veocel shortcut lyocell fibres for the flushable wipes market which not only have higher dispersibility but also benefit from a new finish which improves processability and enhances the efficiency of their production process.

Carbon neutrality of the fibres can also be achieved by balancing remaining GHG emissions through verified compensation measures and retiring carbon credits so that the impact of global warming from anthropogenic activities is calculated as zero.

“We’re always looking for new ways to innovate and improve the performance of our fibres in the flushable market,” said Claudio Zampino, commercial director of speciality applications for nonwovens at Lenzing. “It is important to engage in continuous discussions with value chain partners to address their challenges and needs as we drive innovation in the nonwovens sector. With 27 years of experience producing lyocell shortcut fibres, we will continue to keep leveraging our extensive research labs to offer customers the best premium lyocell shortcut fibres possible.”

The new finish of the new lyocell shortcut fibres offers protection against mechanical stress at commonly used water temperatures (0-40°C) during the wetlaid production process. This helps to avoid the creation of fibre lumps during the opening and dilution of the fibres in preparation tanks. The finished product will also have enhanced physical quality and appearance because the finish improves web formation during the process.

Hydrofine

Albaad, one of the largest wet wipe manufacturers, uses the new lyocell shortcut fibres for its Hydrofine product, the leading flushable wetlaid sold in Europe.

“We are proud to cooperate with the global Lenzing group in developing improvements for lyocell fibres and bringing new innovation that enhances our Hydrofine product and improves the production process,” said Jacob Heen, Albaad CEO. “Hydrofine is considered a breakthrough in the flushable market and is based on these upgraded fibres that help to increase production efficiency, reduce the level of waste and improve customer satisfaction. Collaborating with Lenzing’s R&D team was a valuable experience that provided both sides with great knowledge.”

Consumers are increasingly using flushable wipes for greater convenience and lower impact on the environment. In 2022, the global nonwoven wipes market consumed 1.5 million tons of nonwovens, valued at $20.8 billion, and is expected to reach 2.1 million tons, valued at US$29 billion in 2027, according to Smithers.

It is important to distinguish between flushable wipes made of wood-based fibres and those made of fossil-based fibres, such as polyester or polypropylene, which take decades to disintegrate and contribute to the global microplastic problem, Lenzing stresses.

The new and improved carbon neutral lyocell shortcut Veocel fibres are produced at Lenzing’s plant in Mobile, Alabama.

www.lenzing.com

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