The Business of Fashion, Textiles, and Technology (BFTT) just awarded £1.2m research and development (R&D) funding to 10 small and medium-sized enterprises (SME) from the United Kingdom, as part of the BFTT SME R&D Programme, hosted by the University of the Arts London (UAL).
The BFTT delivers sustainable innovation for the fashion industry and its textile supply chain. Its R&D program helps SME create new products and services with sustainability as the driving force.
It selected 10 R&D projects to receive over £1.2 million of funding plus support. These projects work in areas such as finishing processes, sustainable manufacturing, transparency, digital solutions for creativity, bio-material development, and textiles innovation.
Following 10 SME will be awarded:
- Ananas Anam
- Anna Glover
- Blackhorse Lane Ateliers
- Chip[S] Board
- Elvis & Kresse
Ananas Anam is the company behind Piñatex, man-made cellulosic fiber, and semi-synthetic leather alternative created from pineapple leaf fiber, polylactic acid, and petroleum-based resin. Pineapple plant leaves are a by-product of the existing pineapple harvest.
Be sure to read my sustainable synthetic fabrics list to learn more about other man-made cellulosic fibers derived from plants or wood and how they fare against petroleum-based fabrics.
"Small to medium enterprises are critical to the economy and critical to the creative sector, in particular, making up over 95% of creative businesses in the UK. [...] This initiative is intended to creatively and technically address the challenge of maintaining growth in the crucial early years of business, whilst also providing support for much-needed innovation, and sustainable growth, especially in these challenging and rapidly changing times."
- Dr. Jane Harris, Director of Research & Innovation (Stratford) and BFTT Programme Director
Another round of funding is planned in late Spring 2020. Learn more on the BFTT webpage bftt.org.uk
About the Author: Alex Assoune
Alex Assoune (MS) is a global health and environmental advocate. He founded Panaprium to inspire others with conscious living, ethical, and sustainable fashion. Alex has worked in many countries to address social and environmental issues. He speaks three languages and holds two Master of Science degrees in Engineering from SIGMA and IFPEN schools.