Freudenberg is marketing the first-ever polyester lining to be made from 100% biodegradable fibers. Biodegradability describes the decomposition of organic materials under the effect of water, air and microorganisms in the soil. What determines the rate of degradation - in the same ambient conditions - is the composition of the materials used. This determines how long the process of rotting down takes and whether any substances are released during the decomposition that are hazardous for plants or animals.
Certificates of "Biological Degradability" and "Biodegradable" quality labels can now be awarded through the Hohenstein Institute. A product is endorsed after a sample has decomposed and its ecotoxicological safety has been confirmed.
"As part of the sustainability profile of a product, manufacturers should not only know about the manufacturing process - they also need to know which components of the product remain in the environment after it has reached the end of its useful life. It's the environmental impact that we are interested in," says Prof. Dr. Dirk Höfer of the Hohenstein Institute. The Hohenstein Institute's test system assesses the degradation of organic substances by microorganisms, water and oxygen in realistic conditions in the soil. It is based on standardized soil burial tests according to international norms.
The test procedure for certification is suitable for many textile products and components, including fibers and yarns, clothing, soft furnishings, geo- or functional textiles and nonwovens. Freudenberg Interlining developed a nonwoven textile made of special polyester fibers, which can be used as a lining to strengthen items of clothing or parts of garments. The PES nonwoven that has been certified as biodegradable is best used with light outer materials, such as ladies' clothing, and is an entirely new product on the market.