EQS-News: Lenzing AG: Internationally renowned marine research institute reaffirms biodegradability of Lenzing fibers

EQS-News: Lenzing AG / Key word(s): Sustainability/Scientific publication
Lenzing AG: Internationally renowned marine research institute reaffirms
biodegradability of Lenzing fibers

31.05.2023 / 10:01 CET/CEST
The issuer is solely responsible for the content of this announcement.


Internationally renowned marine research institute reaffirms biodegradability of
Lenzing fibers


• A second study from Scripps Institution of Oceanography provides scientific proof
that LENZING™ Lyocell fibers, LENZING™ Viscose fibers and LENZING™ Modal fibers are
biodegradable in sea-surface and deep-sea conditions
• The biodegradability of LENZING™ Lyocell fibers in sea-surface conditions was first
confirmed in 2021
• Lenzing fibers offer a real alternative in combating plastic pollution in the
world’s oceans


Lenzing/San Diego – The Lenzing Group, a world-leading provider of specialty fibers for
the textile and nonwoven industries, has received further scientific proof that Lenzing
fibers are biodegradable in the ocean and revert to being part of the ecosystem at the
end of their life cycle. Scientists at the prestigious academic research institute
Scripps Institution of Oceanography (SIO) at the University of California, San Diego
confirmed back in 2021 that LENZING™ Lyocell fibers completely biodegrade in
sea-surface conditions in a remarkably short time. In a second study published in May
2023[1]^[1], the biodegradability of LENZING™ Lyocell fibers, LENZING™ Viscose fibers
and LENZING™ Modal fibers on the sea floor was also confirmed, providing definitive
proof that they are a better alternative to petroleum-based fibers. The assessments are
the result of an independent project aimed at understanding end-of-life scenarios for
textiles and nonwovens that are discarded as waste in the environment.


SIO has a global reputation for being one of the oldest, largest and most important
marine research centers. In its latest study, it compared the degradation processes of
nonwovens made of petroleum and bio-based synthetic materials such as polyester and
PLA, cellulosic materials such as cotton, and the Lenzing Group’s wood-based LENZING™
Lyocell fibers, LENZING™ Viscose fibers and LENZING™ Modal fibers in specific
scenarios. The materials were assessed in various real oceanic conditions and
controlled aquaria conditions. The results of these experiments are striking: while the
wood-based cellulosic fibers fully biodegraded within 30 days, both in sea-surface and
sea-floor conditions, the petroleum-based fibers tested were practically unchanged
after more than 200 days.


“Our business model is one of a circular economy. The Lenzing Group uses a highly
efficient system of processing all raw materials to produce fibers that will return to
the ecosystem at the end of their life cycle. Our goal is to raise widespread awareness
of major challenges such as plastic pollution and, above all, offer a truly sustainable
alternative to petroleum-based fibers,” comments Michaela Kogler, Project Manager in
Research & Breakthrough Innovation at the Lenzing Group. “It is also important to raise
awareness of biodegradability, as not everything with an “organic” label is genuinely
compostable and biodegradable,” adds Kogler.


The biodegradability of LENZING™ Lyocell fibers, LENZING™ Viscose fibers and LENZING™
Modal fibers has been tested in the laboratory of Normec Organic Waste Systems (OWS) in
Belgium – one of the world’s leading companies in biodegradability and compostability
testing. The latter confirmed the results in real oceanic conditions and controlled
aquaria conditions. The assessment was conducted in accordance with the prevailing
applicable international standards and reflects all the relevant natural and artificial
environments in which biodegradation can occur. Certificates from the certification
organization TÜV Austria show that LENZING™ Lyocell fibers, LENZING™ Viscose fibers and
LENZING™ Modal fibers rapidly biodegrade in all test environments (soil, industrial
composting, home composting, fresh water and marine water) within the time periods set
by the relevant standards.

Tailwind from legislation

Plastic pollution in the environment is a major problem of our time and may continue to
impact many generations to come. The environmental damage caused by the fashion
industry as a result of fast fashion business models is particularly extreme. The use
of petroleum-based synthetic fibers in textiles has approximately doubled in the last
20 years. This trend is likely to continue. More than half of all textiles around the
world currently contain polyester and this proportion is set to rise according to a
report from the non-profit organization Changing Markets Foundation[2]^[2].


Consequently, Lenzing also welcomes the EU’s targeted measures to combat plastic waste
in general, such as those relating to the single-use plastic directive (EU)
2019/904[3]^[3]. In its recently adopted guidelines for implementing the directive, the
EU Commission precisely stipulates the products that fall under this category, which
will provide the necessary clarity for EU member states in their joint campaign against
environmental pollution from plastic waste. Lenzing’s wood-based, biodegradable
cellulosic fibers can play a role in creating a sustainable and innovative solution to
this man-made problem, which will escalate in the future. The single-use plastic
directive introduced in July 2021 sets out standardized labelling requirements for
certain products, either on packaging or on the products themselves, such as
plastic-based feminine hygiene products and wet wipes for body care or household use.
One of the first steps towards solving this problem is to educate consumers and offer
alternative, more circular materials.


Photo download:

[4] https://mediadb.lenzing.com/pinaccess/showpin.do?pinCode=DK44aOdNI48X



Your contact for  
Public Relations:  
Dominic Köfner Daniel Winkelmeier
Vice President Corporate Communications & Public Communications Manager
Affairs Lenzing Aktiengesellschaft
Lenzing Aktiengesellschaft Werkstraße 2, 4860 Lenzing, Austria
Werkstraße 2, 4860 Lenzing, Austria  
  Phone   +43 7672 701 2871
Phone   +43 7672 701 2743 E-mail     [7]media@lenzing.com
E-mail    [5]media@lenzing.com Web        [8] www.lenzing.com
Web       [6] www.lenzing.com  



About the Lenzing Group
The Lenzing Group stands for ecologically responsible production of specialty fibers
made from the renewable raw material wood. As an innovation leader, Lenzing is a
partner of global textile and nonwoven manufacturers and drives many new technological
The Lenzing Group’s high-quality fibers form the basis for a variety of textile
applications ranging from elegant clothing to versatile denims and high-performance
sports clothing. Due to their consistent high quality, their biodegradability and
compostability Lenzing fibers are also highly suitable for hygiene products and
agricultural applications.
The business model of the Lenzing Group goes far beyond that of a traditional fiber
producer. Together with its customers and partners, Lenzing develops innovative
products along the value chain, creating added value for consumers. The Lenzing Group
strives for the efficient utilization and processing of all raw materials and offers
solutions to help redirect the textile sector towards a closed-loop economy. In order
to reduce the speed of global warming and to accomplish the targets of the Paris
Climate Agreement and the “Green Deal” of the EU Commission, Lenzing has a clear
vision: namely to make a zero-carbon future come true.
Key Facts & Figures Lenzing Group 2022
Revenue: EUR 2.57 bn
Nominal capacity (fibers): 1,145,000 tonnes
Number of employees (headcount): 8,301
MICROMODAL™ and PROMODAL™ are trademarks of Lenzing AG.


[9]^[1] https://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0284681


[11]^[3] Directive (EU) 2019/904 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 5
June 2019 on the reduction of the impact of certain plastic products on the environment


31.05.2023 CET/CEST This Corporate News was distributed by EQS Group AG. www.eqs.com


Language: English
Company: Lenzing AG
4860 Lenzing
Phone: +43 7672-701-0
Fax: +43 7672-96301
E-mail: office@lenzing.com
Internet: www.lenzing.com
ISIN: AT0000644505
Indices: ATX
Listed: Vienna Stock Exchange (Official Market)
EQS News ID: 1645891

End of News EQS News Service

1645891  31.05.2023 CET/CEST


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