Freshwater-free textile made from salt-tolerant plants
The UK-based start-up SaltyCo, a spin-off company from the Royal College of Art and Imperial College London, developed freshwater-free textile by processing salt-tolerant plants, irrigated with seawater.
Only 3% of all available water in the world is freshwater, and of that, only 1% is drinkable. This water is shared by everyone in the world. At the same time, a major consumer of freshwater is also the textile industry. Freshwater is used to make natural textiles, with mainly cotton as the culprit, but water is also used in the production of synthetic textiles.
SaltyCo is the first company to offer textiles that are completely freshwater-free. Instead, they turned to the most abundant source of water in the world, seawater. Using salt-tolerant plants, they extract fibres which are then turned into textiles.
They are currently developing a technical stuffing, which is ready to pilot, a non-woven felt and a woven linen-like fabric, but still under development. All products are vegan, fair-trade, organic, and carbon neutral.