Two innovative New Zealand companies, Revolution Fibres and New Zealand Extracts, have joined forces to form Active Fibres Ltd – a joint venture which will see the development and commercialisation of functional nanofibres and fabrics.
Revolution Fibres creates ultra-fine fibres from a range of natural materials using a process called electrospinning while New Zealand Extracts Ltd uses a unique water extraction process to produce fruit and berry extracts that are naturally high in bioactives. The new business will combine these technologies to produce nanofibres – man-made fibres around one trillionth of a metre in size– for use across a range of industries including medical, textile and filtration.
Dr Glenn Vile, General Manager of New Zealand Extracts, says that combining the natural activity of plant extracts with fibres will create a range of new uses in many applications from cosmetics to medical applications such as wound repair.
“We’re very excited about the diversity of applications open to us by using nanofibres – especially those fibres derived from natural, organic and sustainable sources. It greatly increases our diversity of products, and the method of delivery of our extracts,” says Vile.
Iain Hosie, Technical Director for Revolution Fibres shares the same view. “We have developed a process that can produce very high yields of nanofibres using a range of polymers to suit various industries. Securing a range of natural materials that add natural functionality to our fibres with the new company opens the door to commercialise some exciting new products and creates significant opportunities for export,” he says.
The joint venture is an important step for the start-up Revolution Fibres. Hosie says it has always been a focus to partner with companies that need nanotechnologies incorporated into their products but don’t want the distraction or capital expense of becoming nanofibre production companies themselves.
“We want to take advantage of the innovative materials sector which is so strong in New Zealand by delivering that sector an alternative and unique offering in nanofibres as another route to market and product diversification. We’re excited to be forming Active Fibres and are looking forward to helping New Zealand businesses expand their product offerings,” adds Hosie.
About New Zealand Extracts Ltd
New Zealand Extracts offers fruit and berry extracts that are naturally high in bioactive compounds including antioxidants, natural anti-inflammatory agents and antimicrobial agents. Using a unique water extraction process, 100% Aqua Pure®, the products are completely free of chemical residues. New Zealand Extracts Ltd are dedicated to delivering quality products supported by quality science, especially in the functional food and personal care areas. Product lines include proprietary functional blends of extracts from grape seeds and skins as well as extracts from, boysenberries, blackcurrants and kiwi fruit. These products are branded under NZ Extracts Oxifend® and Vinanza® brands.
About Revolution Fibres Ltd
Revolution Fibres is a New Zealand owned-and-operated nanofibre production company. It is New Zealand’s first company offering nanofibre production services and nanofibre products – using a production technique called Sonic Electrospinning Technology©. Revolution Fibres can create custom-made fibres for a variety of applications from healthcare to composites, fabrics to electronics. The company is committed to championing New Zealand’s materials, science and innovation wherever possible.