About Piñatex ®
Piñatex® is an innovative natural textile made from pineapple leaf ﬁbre.
The journey of Piñatex® began while Carmen, a leathergoods expert, was consulting on the Philippines leather export industry in the 1990s. Shocked at the environmental impact of mass leather production and chemical tanning she realised this could not continue, but knew that PVC alternatives were not the solution. She was driven to research a sustainable alternative.
Inspired by the abundance of natural resources, including the use of plant fibres in traditional weaving such as the delicate Barong Tagalog garments, Carmen sought to create a new, non-woven textile that could be commercially produced, provide positive social and economic impact and maintain a low environmental footprint throughout its life cycle.
The long fibres are extracted through a process called decortication, which is done at the plantation by the farming community. Ananas Anam has developed the first automated decorticating machine to assist with this process, allowing farmers to utilise greater quantities of their waste leaves. Once the leaves have been stripped of fibre the leftover biomass can be used as a nutrient-rich natural fertiliser or a biofuel, so nothing is wasted.
The fibres then get degummed and undergo an industrial process to become a non-woven mesh, which forms the base of Piñatex®.
The rolls of non-woven mesh are then transported to Spain for specialised finishing. This unique process is what gives Piñatex®its leather-like appearance, creating a textile that is soft and flexible, yet very durable.
The finished textile is distributed to designers directly by Ananas Anam, who use it as a sustainable alternative to leather in footwear and fashion accessories, clothing, interior furnishing and automotive upholstery.