A Singapore based agriculture biomaterial processing company is seeking chemical free technologies to manufacture pineapple leaf fibers (PALF) from pineapple leaves. Pineapple is a popular plant mainly cultivate for its delicious fruit. As it is a perennial crop, the plant is of no use post fruit harvesting, resulting in huge volumes of pineapple leaves generated as agricultural waste. In the Philippines, traditional luxury textiles made by traditional craftsmen in small quantities were made of PALF and exported to Europe in the past. The modern PALF manufacturing process consumes substantial amounts of generates large amounts of difficult-to-treat wastewater. As such, chemical-free methods that that minimise or eliminates the usage of chemicals as well as the generation of wastewater are desired to minimise the impact on the environment.
The current process to produce pineapple leaf fibres from pineapple leaves are as follows:
The tech seeker is looking for scalable manufacturing methods that can replace step 3 of the process, eliminating or reducing the use of chemicals. One such method can be the use of enzymatic methods such as pectinase and xylanase.
Manufacturing processes that cannot be scaled up for industrial production