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Natural fiber

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Title: Natural fiber  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
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Subject: Alpaca fiber, Cotton, Linen, Animal fiber, Fiber
Collection: Fibers
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

Natural fiber

Fibers or fibres (see BP.[1][2]


  • Sources 1
    • Animal fibers 1.1
  • Industrial usage 2
  • See also 3
  • References 4
  • External links 5


Natural fibers are made from plant, animal and mineral sources. Natural fibers can be classified according to their origin.

Category Description
Seed fiber Fibers collected from seeds or seed cases. e.g. cotton and kapok
Leaf fiber Fibers collected from leaves. e.g., sansevieria, fique, sisal, banana and agave.
Bast fiber Fibers are collected from the skin or bast surrounding the stem of their respective plant. These fibers have higher tensile strength than other fibers. Therefore, these fibers are used for durable yarn, fabric, packaging, and paper. Some examples are flax, jute, kenaf, industrial hemp, ramie, rattan, and vine fibers.
Skin fiber
Fruit fiber Fibers are collected from the fruit of the plant, e.g. coconut (coir) fiber.
Stalk fiber Fibers are actually the stalks of the plant. E.g. straws of wheat, rice, barley, and other crops including bamboo and grass. Tree wood is also such a fiber.

The most used plant fibers are cotton, flax and hemp, although sisal, jute, kenaf, bamboo and coconut are also widely used.

Hemp fibers are mainly used for ropes and aerofoils because of their high suppleness and resistance within an aggressive environment. Hemp fibers are, for example, currently used as a seal within the heating and sanitary industries.

Animal fibers

Animal fibers generally comprise proteins such as collagen, keratin and fibroin; examples include silk, sinew, wool, catgut, angora, mohair and alpaca.

  • Animal hair (wool or hairs): Fiber or wool taken from animals or hairy mammals. e.g. sheep's wool, goat hair (cashmere, mohair), alpaca hair, horse hair, etc.
  • Silk fiber: Fiber secreted by glands (often located near the mouth) of insects during the preparation of cocoons.
  • Avian fiber: Fibers from birds, e.g. feathers and feather fiber.

Industrial usage

19th century knowledge weaving flax, hemp, jute, Manila hemp, sisal and vegetable fibers

After World War II, the build-up of synthetic fibers significantly decreased the use of natural fibers. Now, with the increase of oil prices and environmental considerations, there has been a revival of natural fiber use within the textile, building, plastic and automotive industries. This interest is reinforced by the developmental perspectives on the agro-industrial market and local productions, allowing economic development and independence versus imported materials.

France remains the greatest European hemp fiber producer with 50,000 tons yearly (EU 100,000 tons). France also produces the largest range of industrial seeds worldwide. China and Russia are also important producers, but the statistics in that field are not available.

In the industrial domain, the consortium DAIFA group SAS have reached a leading position in Europe in the automotive plastics market.[3] They specialize in injection and thermopress plastics reinforced with natural fibers.

The use of natural fibers at the industrial level improves the environmental sustainability of the parts being constructed, especially within the automotive market. Within the building industry, the interest in natural fibers is mostly economical and technical; natural fibers allow insulation properties higher than current materials.

See also


  1. ^ Balter M. (2009). Clothes Make the (Hu) Man. Science,325(5946):1329.doi:10.1126/science.325_1329a PMID 19745126
  2. ^ Kvavadze E, Bar-Yosef O, Belfer-Cohen A, Boaretto E,Jakeli N, Matskevich Z, Meshveliani T. (2009).30,000-Year-Old Wild Flax Fibers. Science, 325(5946):1359. doi:10.1126/science.1175404 PMID 19745144 Supporting Online Material
  3. ^

External links

  • Mundo Material
  • IJSG
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