Germany-based Bayer MaterialScience introduced Insquin, a sustainable technology for producing polyurethane (PU) coated fabrics without using solvents.
The company is offering the integrated package of pure waterborne PU technology, material co-development and a certified manufacturer partner program for PU coated fabrics to foster value chain collaborations with apparel, footwear and handbag makers.
According to Bayer MaterialScience, every year around 7 billion pairs of shoes, 2 billion bags and 1 billion garments are produced with PU leather and other PU coated fabric, an environmental and health hazard putting a strain on local ecosystems and exposing workers to solvents. Insquin waterborne PU technology is said to not only enable PU leather to be manufactured without solvent, but also reduce water consumption by up to 95 percent and energy consumption by up to 50 percent in the coating process.
Bayer has set up pilot lines in laboratories in China and Germany to work with brand owners on the development and testing of new coated fabrics. By working directly with brands and supporting their sourcing and manufacturing partners, the company said it would address a wide array of concerns including product design, manufacturing innovation and environmental performance.
Nicholas Smith, Global Head of Textile Coating at Bayer MaterialScience, said, “Our hope is that by interacting directly with brands as well as with manufacturers, we can reshape material innovation in the apparel and footwear industry. We are committed to reducing harmful effects on people and the environment, by enabling manufacturing that eliminates worker exposure to solvents and lowers resource consumption.”