Inspirational appetizers on unusual startups, emerging trends and bleeding-edge research

Material gains

Sustainability

As winter draws in, bacteria start to grow more quickly.

Not much fun unless you happen to be a scientist. We’ve seen wood and designer bags manufactured from fast growing cells.

Now, a startup from New York has developed a leather-like material using bacterial nanocellulose and plant-based fibres. The novel material is free of chemicals and plastics, as well as being biodegradable.

It might not come from animals, but it looks just like real leather. What’s more, it can be produced in significant quantities without using much water or releasing any CO2 into the atmosphere.

Suitable for clothes, car seat covers or home accessories such as pillow cases.

It’s not just investors who like it.

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