CE.20.002 – GROW-T – Bio-fabricating textiles from mycelium for sustainable fashion

Route: Circular economy

Cluster question: 052 How can we create a truly circular economy so that industrial goods manufacturing depends less on primary raw materials?

Fashion industry is known as a very unsustainable sector and has a disastrous societal and environmental impact. Over the last decade, initiatives for cloth swapping, innovative recycling processes, sustainable design principles and developing less polluting fabrics have led to societal awareness and introduction of more sustainable products. Despite these efforts, to truly move towards a circular fashion system a radical transition is needed with new concepts. Fungal mycelium is a promising material and a serious future alternative for unsustainable textiles (cotton, leather, synthetic materials). So, How can we develop mycelium-based textiles which lead to a radical transition in the fashion system with a positive social, cultural, economic and environmental impact? A system approach is necessary for scientific and societal breakthroughs. To develop successfully a sustainable/circular value chain based on fungal mycelium, it is necessary to involve various knowledge domains and relevant stakeholders: cultivation of the fungal species of interest must be scalable, its mycelium must be technically applicable as textile, it must be accepted and appreciated by users, and be economically profitable for all stakeholders. Therefore we build a multi-disciplinary consortium with scientists from different fields like bio-materials, circular business, consumer behaviour, and fashion and design studies. They work together with partners within the entire value chain, including SME’s for textile and fashion design, suppliers for agro-food waste, the trade association for textile, foundations and network organisations for a sustainable and circular economy, and international platforms to share and disseminate our obtained knowledge and experiences. They all want to speed up the development of mycelium-based materials and to create better conditions in the fashion value chain for this innovation to be successful and ultimately impactful.

Keywords

circular economy, Mycelium polymers, sustainable fashion

Other organisations

14 business partners, 8 societal partners, Food Chemicals), Groniningen University, Technische Universiteit Delft (TUD), The Hague University of Applied Sciences, Utrecht University (UU), WUR

Submitter

Organisation ArtEZ University of the Arts, Wageningen University & Research (WUR)
Name Dr. J. (Jeroen) van den Eijnde
E-mail j.vandeneijnde@artez.nl
Website www.futuremakers.artez.nl