In a notable departure from petroleum-based textiles, Ingeo derives its fiber from corn, an annually renewable resource. Bacterial fermentation is used to convert corn from a starch to a sugar and then to polylactic acid, which in turn is processed like most thermoplastics into fiber. Ingeo is a closed-loop sustainable product: the natural origins of the polymer allow it to be safely biodegraded at the end of its useful life. Future plans include the utilization of corn husks and other parts of the plant that are inedible (known as biomass).
A nonwoven, perforated version called Die-cut Ingeo was introduced with Material Matters, the third collection of textiles to come from an ongoing relationship with the Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation.
Contact: Designtex, New York, NY, USA.
For more information, see Transmaterial 2: A Catalog of Materials That Redefine our Physical Environment