Expanding the range of sustainable materials
Brewed Protein™ refers to protein materials produced from plant-derived biomass using Spiber’s proprietary fermentation (brewing) process. Brewed Protein™ materials can be processed into a variety of forms, with examples ranging from delicate filament fibers with a silky sheen to spun yarns that boast features such as cashmere-like softness or the renowned thermal and moisture-wicking properties of wool. Brewed Protein™ materials have a lot to offer ethically, too—Spiber’s in-house technology allows for the production of compelling animal-free fur and leather alternatives, and Brewed Proteins can also be processed into resins closely resembling tortoiseshell or animal horn. With potential uses ranging from medical applications to lightweight composite materials, the adaptability of Brewed Proteins means they are perfectly placed to support a wide variety of consumer needs.
In addition to their diversity, Brewed Protein™ materials also offer several important environmental benefits. As biobased materials, they do not create or break down into environmentally-damaging microplastics, and the unique microbial fermentation technology used in their production has the potential to avoid ethical issues and reduce greenhouse gas emissions as compared to the use of animal fibers. With this combination of adaptability and environmentally responsible design, Brewed Protein™ materials represent an exciting new option for designers and creators looking to build a better, more sustainable future.
The next material revolution
After establishing itself as an industry leader in the emergent field of protein materials through years of diligent research and development, Spiber is now focusing on the transition to mass production. Spiber’s Thailand plant, currently under construction, is scheduled to begin commercial operation in 2021 with an annual capacity of several hundred tonnes, and preparations are underway for scale-up initiatives in the USA aimed at further reducing environmental burden and production costs. With an eye towards driving future progress, Spiber is engaged in collaborations with designers, creators, and top-tier companies in numerous industries, all working towards one goal—to bring the next stage of the protein revolution to fruition.