Californian biotech company Genomatica (Geno) alongside longtime collaborator Aquafil successfully completed the first demonstration scale production runs for plant-based nylon-6. The material is intended to reshape the $22 billion nylon industry, enabling brands to meet demand from consumers for sustainable everyday materials from apparel to automotive parts to carpets.
Aquafil, the creator of the branded ECONYL® regenerated nylon and pioneer in the circular economy, and ITOCHU Corporation (headquartered in Minato-ku, Tokyo) entered into a non-exclusive business alliance agreement to promote and expand the nylon circular business.
Clean manufacturing leader Genomatica signed a first-of-its-kind deal with Aquafil to build a demonstration scale facility to produce the largest quantity of 100% renewable nylon-6 ever available. Responding to surging consumer interest in sustainable products, the material will go to leading global brands eager to explore and develop renewable products, create showcase goods and test feedback with customers. The deal is a 50-fold expansion over previous production levels and represents significant acceleration toward commercializing renewably-sourced nylon-6 — a material that is poised to reshape a $960 billion textile industry that touches millions of lives every day, from the carpet we walk on to the clothes we wear.
Eighty years after nylon’s first commercial production, clean manufacturing technology leader Genomatica achieved a new milestone for the material — its production of the world’s first renewably-sourced ton of the key ingredient for nylon-6, made from plants instead of crude oil.
Nylon, the first totally synthetic fiber to be made into consumer products including apparel and carpet, is responsible for an estimated 60 million tons of greenhouse gas emissions per year through traditional production which begins with crude oil.Continue reading →
Italy-based Aquafil and Californian biotech company Genomatica join forces to create sustainable caprolactam, a key ingredient to producing 100% sustainable nylon. The collaboration between the two companies aims to develop a commercially-advantageous bioprocess (Genomatica’s GENO CPL process) to make caprolactam using plant-based renewable ingredients, rather than the crude oil-derived materials traditionally used by the nylon industry.