Naturally Advanced Technologies Inc (NAT), which produces and markets one of the first new natural fibers in decades, CRAiLAR, announced it will partner with Tuscarora Yarns, one of the world's premier yarn innovators, to explore a host of new blended yarns using CRAiLAR Flax.
Under the terms of the non-exclusive, non-transferable license, Tuscarora Yarns will design and manufacture highly specialized CRAiLAR Flax fiber yarns and related products for sale and distribution to third party licensees of CRAiLAR.
"Tuscarora is one of the most innovative yarn spinners in the world, and has the ability to prepare us for entry into several unexplored categories such as couture fashion, sports performance, extreme weather gear, and certain sectors of home furnishings," said Ken Barker, CEO of NAT. "This agreement will seek to push the applications of CRAiLAR beyond our first phase of cotton blending and establish new market sectors for this unique and sustainable natural fiber."
The proprietary CRAiLAR enzymatic process, developed by Vancouver-based NAT in conjunction with the National Research Council of Canada, turns natural bast fibers—such as flax, hemp, jute, and kenaf - into soft, finished textiles that are as comfortable as cotton, but more durable and eco-friendly.
The result is a product that can integrate with existing technology for spinning, weaving, or forming fabric, which can be used across categories such as apparel, footwear, work wear, and domestic textiles. Additionally, CRAiLAR can be used for a number of industrial applications. Since March 2011, NAT has announced commercialization or development agreements for CRAiLAR Flax fiber with HanesBrands, Georgia-Pacific, Levi Strauss & Co., Cintas, Carhartt, Ashland, Westex, Brilliant Global Knitwear and Target.
Tuscarora Yarns is a maker of specialty yarns headquartered in Mt. Pleasant, N.C. The company has been a reliable resource for the apparel and textile industry since 1899. Tuscarora is one of the leading manufacturers of heather and mélange yarns in the world. The company also serves the automotive and home furnishings markets.
Naturally Advanced Technologies Inc. develops renewable and environmentally sustainable biomass resources from flax, hemp and other bast fibers. The Company, through its wholly owned subsidiary, CRAiLAR Fiber Technologies Inc., has developed proprietary technologies for production of bast fibers, cellulose pulp, and their resulting by-products in collaboration with Canada's National Research Council.
Naturally Advanced Technologies Inc