This morning my coffee came in a cup made from corn. Not being a chemist, I'm not going to over think just how tasty yellow corn became a container for my morning kick, but this isn't the first time I've seen plastic parade around in a corn suit. Bio-based and recycled plastic materials are the next wave of environmentally friendly products, which strive to limit plastic in landfills as well as decrease our dependency on petroleum.
Terratex. Designed by True.
True is a textile company that is making sustainability their top priority. It started as a child company of Interface, a carpet manufacturer that is famous for being a pioneer in greening the carpet market. In 1995 True introduced Terratex, a commercial fabric that aims to be sustainable at every step of its life, from raw materials through the end of the product's useful life. "Terratex is made from 100% recycled polyester (largely post-consumer plastic soda pop bottles) or renewable materials (such as PLA which is derived from corn)." - True
What makes corn-based fabrics tricky is the dying process. True developed its own unique process in order to make the fabrics commercially viable without turning them back into corn mush. The company has a whole series of gimmicky processes such as TerraCHECK and ReSKU, which focus on quality control, environmental impact and end of life recycling, all of which play into the media hype of sustainability but are actually doing something to make things better.
Aesthetically the fabrics are attractive and offer a wide range of colors and patterns to suit any commercial job. True makes fabrics which are cut to order which not only reduces fabric waste, but also reduces labor costs, benefiting both the budget and the environment. When faced with a choice between a company that makes the effort to be greener and a company that doesn't, I hope True lives up to its goals and becomes an industry standard.