Refers to textiles used in industrial and commercial products, originally as soil filters, with growing commercial appeal and usage –  from stabilising embankments to fabric based components in the motor and electronic industries.

These are mostly synthetic, although research into vegetable fibres is increasingly finding relevant uses for the likes of hemp, jute and kenaf. It makes ecological, economic and commercial sense to choose natural fibres whenever we can, part and parcel of responsible global development. These tall plants grow in poor grounds, growing very fast, needing no artificial chemicals to grow or produce, and absorbing huge amounts of CO2; they provide a living for many of the poorest communities of the world.

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