By Lorrin Windahl.
Leather. Like it or not it results in the death of the animal. Some may argue that it is the by-product of the meat industry and therefore a kind of recycling of a waste product. But others are not so assured given it is often more profitable than the selling of the meat. For those of us who do have a guilty conscience when we dress in our expensive soft leather shoes, there may now be an alternative which is much less detrimental to the animal. Pinatex. A leather alternative derived from pineapple waste.
Ananas Anam is the company responsible for this new ethical material. They have developed the material as part of their vision to produce textiles that “enhance the well-being of the earth and its people through the entire life cycle…” of their products.
Pinatex is a non woven, sustainable textile that has been 7 years in development. The pineapple leaf fibres used in the material are a waste product resulting from the harvesting of the fruit. One of the great social outcomes of this textile development, is that by using these fibres, Ananas Anam are providing an additional revenue stream for pineapple farmers in the Philippines.
Some of Pinatex’s characteristics are that it is strong, breathable, soft, light, flexible and easily cut, stitched and printed on. It comes in various thicknesses and finishes, and has a roll width of 155cm.
Pinatex has a wide variety of uses including bags, shoes, clothing and even furniture. The image above illustrates the material’s many uses. Even well-known shoe manufacturers, Camper and Puma, have started using the material as a leather alternative.
Although I’ve been a vegetarian for some years, it has been a lot harder to remove leather from my wardrobe. Pinatex would certainly make it easier. So, hopefully we’ll see a lot more of this leather alternative in the future.