Enzymes can be applied in several steps of textile wet processing and in formulation of detergent powders. Since the major textile finishing process is coloration, classical finishing processes can be divided into preparation for coloration and after-coloration steps. Coloration might be done during fibre extrusion of synthetic fibres, on a bundle of fibres, on yarns, on fabrics or on garments. The sequence of processes depends on the demands of the market for the characteristics of a final product but depends essentially at which stage the coloration process is done. (If fashion or market regulations demand materials in the raw state, they are supplied unfinished.). Preparation for coloration steps generally involves the removal of impurities, natural coloured pigments, sizes and lubricants. Preparation of synthetic fibres also involves thermal treatments for uniform dyeing. After coloration, processes include chemical and mechanical processes. Industrial laundering and home washing of garments can be also included in the after coloration processes. To give an overview of enzymatic applications in textiles a brief characterization of major wet processing steps before and after coloration and during coloration itself will be presented.
Originally published in: New Cloth Market, September-2010