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Taiwan company converting polyester waste into feedstock

Taiwan’s Far Eastern New Century has unveiled pioneering new recycling technology that converts discarded textile waste streams into fresh feedstock for other industries. The firm’s new process can help recycle polyester from all types of used textiles, including mixed streams. Initially, post-consumer textiles are separated without a need for additional decoloring or use of complex solvents. Polyester is then dissolved and the mixed polymers and dyestuffs are filtered out. Cellulose is isolated in the process and converted into energy-dense fuel rods which can generate electricity.

Far Eastern New Century, is a polyester and textile manufacturer and supplies polyester-related materials to major global sports, outdoor, leisure and fast fashion brands. The solution closes the loop of current PET recycling, diverting what was once destined for landfills to new value-added consumer goods. The company has revealed an all-in-one chemical recycling solution for post-consumer waste textiles, which is expected to support the circular economy movement and help Far Eastern maintain its leadership in smart textile innovation.

Recycled products accounted for 26 per cent of the company’s offering last year. The technology offers further evidence that there is more than one way to close the loop in textiles, with many believing a more pragmatic – and logistically and financially viable – option is to use old textile waste streams to provide feedstock for other industries.