Nonwovens / Technical Textiles
VEOCEL™ upgrades lyocell shortcut fiber offering for the flushable market
- New upgrade improves processability of lyocell shortcut fibers and enhances machine efficiency, which contributes to reduced occurrence of mechanical blockages and product defects
- The wood-based lyocell shortcut fibers by VEOCEL™ are offered as carbon neutral, helping to drive the flushable wipes market towards decarbonization
Constantly innovating to improve the premium quality of fibers
“We’re always looking for new ways to innovate and improve the performance of our fibers in the flushable market,” said Claudio Zampino, Commercial Director, Specialty Applications for Global Nonwovens Business at Lenzing. “It is important to engage in continuous discussions with value chain partners to address their challenges and needs as we drive innovation in the nonwovens sector. With 27 years of experience producing lyocell shortcut fibers, we will continue to keep leveraging our extensive research labs to offer customers the best premium lyocell shortcut fibers possible.”
The new finish of the upgraded lyocell shortcut fibers offers protection against mechanical stress at commonly used water temperatures such as 0°C to 40°C during the wetlaid production process. This helps to avoid the creation of fiber lumps during the opening and dilution of fibers in preparation tanks. The finished product will also have enhanced physical quality and appearance thanks to the upgraded finish which improves web formation during the process.
Albaad, one of the largest wet wipe manufacturers in the world, used the new lyocell shortcut fibers for its Hydrofine® product, the most saleable flushable wetlaid in Europe.
“We are proud to cooperate with the global Lenzing group in developing improvements for lyocell fibers and bringing new innovation that enhances our Hydrofine® product and improves the production process. Our unique Hydrofine® product, which is considered a breakthrough in the flushable market, is based on these upgraded fibers that help to increase production efficiency, reduce the level of waste and improve customer satisfaction. Collaborating with Lenzing’s R&D team was a valuable experience that provided both sides with great knowledge. Albaad is committed to innovation, to reduce the industry’s carbon footprint, and to ensure continued improvement of our products’ performance," said Jacob Heen, CEO of Albaad.
Continued growth of the flushable market
More and more consumers are using flushable wipes for greater convenience and lower impact on the environment. In 2022, the global nonwoven wipes market consumed 1.5 million tons nonwovens, valued at US$20.8 billion, and is expected to reach 2.1 million tons, valued at US$29.0 billion in 2027. As consumers continue to look for products made of natural materials, it is important to distinguish between flushable wipes made of wood-based fibers and wipes made of fossil-based fibers, such as polyester or polypropylene which take decades to disintegrate and contribute to the global micro plastic problem.
Flushable wipes which are made of lyocell shortcut fibers by VEOCEL™ with improved finish and are produced with adequate settings of the Roll Good Manufacturer, can disperse and degrade to meet current flushability guidelines as proven by mechanical disintegration and biodisintegration tests done at Lenzing R&D Center and the International Water Services Flushability Group (IWSFG) specifications.
The new and improved carbon neutral lyocell shortcut fibers by VEOCEL™ can be purchased from Lenzing’s production site in Mobile, Alabama.
 Carbon neutrality is achieved by balancing remaining GHG emissions through verified compensation measures (e.g. reforestation) and by retiring carbon credits so that the impact of global warming from anthropogenic activities is calculated as zero.
 The Future to Global Nonwoven Wipes to 2027, Smithers 2022 (URL)