What is Natural Fiber?
Fibers are a class of hair-like materials that are continuous filaments or are in discrete elongated pieces, similar to pieces of thread. Fibers are of two types: natural fiber which consists of animal and plant fibers, and man made fiber which consists of synthetic fibers and regenerated fibers. Natural fibers are made from plant, animal and mineral sources. Natural fibers can be classified according to their origin. Natural Fibers are sustainable and not man made.
Fibers collected from seeds or seed cases. e.g. cotton and kapok
Fibers collected from leaves. e.g., sansevieria, fique, sisal, banana and agave.
Bast / Skin 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
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.
- 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.
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