Advanced material technology company Primaloft has announced that its Primaloft Bio fibres are now renewable in a circular economy, after third-party testing proved the polyester fibres were capable of being chemically recycled. This recycling process breaks down polyester to its basic components so that it can be re-used in new material. Primaloft Bio fibres are made from 100 per cent post-consumer recycled material and are said to break down when exposed to specific environments – such as a landfill or the ocean. The company says it has now enhanced this to be more attractive to the naturally-occurring microbes found in these environments, so that they eat away at the fibres at a faster rate, returning the fabric or insulation to natural elements.

These fibres will, according to Primaloft, only biodegrade when exposed to these naturally-occurring microbes in landfills or bodies of water, meaning the insulation or fabric should remain highly durable throughout its usable lifecycle in a garment.

Primaloft President and CEO Mike Joyce said, “The intention of Primaloft Bio was always to address the eventual end of life of a garment in an impactful way, while finding a solution for the industry-wide microplastics issue. Biodegradability is an end of life solution that works in harmony with the circularity model. With the ability to renew our fibres, we are changing the conversation to circularity. Circular economies are the next frontier in sustainability and we have proven our capabilities in this space.

“We have been using recycled polyester fibres sourced from plastic bottles in our products since 2007. Through this traditional mechanical recycling process, new high-performance material can be created. However, this method cannot be used repeatedly without eventually sacrificing the performance characteristics of the polyester and continuing to use additional natural resources. That’s why PrimaLoft searched for new ways to close the system,” he concluded.