Read in 2 mins

Turning food waste into fiber and fabrics

How do you transform waste that causes pollution and disease into a valuable resource for a planet positive fashion industry? Circular Systems knows. And the industry is thankful.

Did you know that banana trees, pineapple leaves, rice straws etcetera, offer 2.5 times the current global fiber demand? It does, but most of this is seen as waste and is left to rot, creating methane pollution and crop disease. Or, when burnt, attributing to 10% of all air pollution deaths every year. Circular Systems realized this waste is actually a valuable resource, and transformed the food crop waste into high-value natural fiber products.

After a successful pilot in China, the company has now increased capacity to full scale commercial operations.

”We are also running new feedstocks, agricultural leftovers from the EU and China, including Oilseed Flax, supporting an economically challenged region in China by buying their oilseed crop residues. Additionally, we have begun to process CBD Hemp, the non-psychoactive medicinal form of industrial hemp, using inputs from both China and Northern EU. Circular Systems is the world’s first producer of textile grade fiber from the stalks of CBD hemp – a truly groundbreaking new high value use for the leftovers of this new medical crop,” says Isaac Nichelson, co-founder of Circular Systems/Agraloop.

The company has signed such a high number of collaborations that they are now able to scale the yarn and fabric production, from 10’s of tons per month in 2020, to 100’s of tons per month in 2021.

”We are ultimately planning on reaching 1,000’s of tons per month in 2022 in order to serve many of the top players in the fashion industry. Watch out for many exciting product launches with major brands scheduled throughout 2022.”

Isaac Nichelson

Though 2020 was tough for many companies, Agraloop have been fortunate to have grown fast during the pandemic.

”Since we started as a global virtual organization operating in MS Teams, we did not skip a beat when the pandemic hit. Circular Systems saw an increase in sales in 2020 of over 500%, despite Covid-19. We were also able to complete a solid round of equity financing, raising over $7.3 million in our 2020 Seed Round, which closed in January 2021.”

The company is now leaving start up mode to enter a new era for Circular Systems and Agraloop. Taking their technology and knowhow global, they are entering negotiations with top regional manufacturers in South Asia, North America, and the Euro-zone, to form strategic licensing partnerships for continued expansion of Circular Systems manufacturing capacity.

Circular Systems/Agraloop

Core team: Isaac Nichelson, Co-founder and CEO and Geof Kime, Co-founder and COO
Contact: Andrew Schulenburg, [email protected]