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Ahimsa silk–drawing yarn without killing worms

April 18, 2006 (India)

Ahimsa Silk yarn drawn out without killing worms will certainly make animal rights activists like Maneka Gandhi and Amala happy.

APCO’s Hyderabad-based technical officer Kusuma Rajaiah developed this silk which does not use yarn that is drawn normally by killing cocooned silkworms by putting them in boiling water.

Left-over cocoons are treated with detergent-like chemicals to dissolve them into a blob like cotton.
Yarn is then spun out either manually or mechanically to make silk fibre.

It is a laborious and costlier process and takes about 100 kg of cocoons to produce up to 15 kg of yarn.

By boiling a single cocoon at least 500 metres of silk yarn can be produced, whereas yarn obtained by Rajaiah’s method yields just 15 percent.

Rajaiah’s innovation has been received with much enthusiasm.
Handloom Commissioner was amazed to learn about preparation of silk without killing worms, said APCO Vice-President and Managing Director, YS Prasad.

In order to bring down production cost, further research and development is required, said Rajaiah.

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