for short cut fibers for the manufacture of dispersible substrates,
which are used for flushable wipes.
“The market for these products—principally used for the manufacture of moist toilet tissue – is becoming established, and the
proven performance of Kelheim’s fibers in this area, both in terms
of processing and dispersability performance are key growth
drivers,” he says.
Manufactured from cellulose, Kelheim’s fibers are derived from
sustainably managed plantations, and can be supplied with Forest
Stewardship Council (FSC) or (Programme for the Endorsement of
Forest Certification) PEFC certification.
With consumers becoming increasingly aware of the impact of
their behavior and the products they use on the environment, sustainability is top of mind for Kelheim and others in the industry,
especially in the disposables market.
“The sustainable raw materials used in the
production of viscose—cellulose from man-
aged forests—and the knowledge that the
products can be disposed of safely and with-
out harm to the environment are key drivers
for growth,” North explains. “Beyond this the
inherent properties of viscose, particularly in
terms of its absorbency, ensures that products
made from viscose fibers deliver consistent
high performance for the consumer.”
In the U.S., Leigh Fibers recycles waste ma-
terials that are sources from the apparel, bed-
ding, nonwovens, home furnishings, filtration
and automotive industries, both natural and
synthetic fibers that can be reprocessed and
reused in the nonwovens industry. Leigh’s
fiber products add can be found in acousti-
cal insulation, furniture padding, geotextiles,
bedding and other applications. “[Our fibers
give] the industry a sustainable fiber and raw
material option, economic benefit versus tra-
ditionally used staple fiber, marketing benefit
of the nonwovens containing recycled con-
tent,”says Daniel Mason, senior vice president
of Business Development, Leigh Fibers.
Since its founding nearly a century ago,
Leigh has diverted more than 14 billion
pounds of textile waste and by-products from
landfills and is currently active in 25 countries
around the world.
In 2014, Leigh acquired ICE Recycling. The
Lake City, SC-based company reprocesses
post-industrial polymers, cardboard, paper
and metals for companies throughout the
Southeast and Mid-Atlantic. ICE provides
both on-site waste-stream management as
well as off-site reprocessing services. “The acquisition of ICE Recycling has allowed Leigh
Fibers to strengthen their raw material supply
chain while adding to the suite of sustainable
products and services they offer,” Mason says.
Fiber Companies Expand
European polyolefin fiber producer Beaulieu Fibres International (BFI) will be bring-