It has been decades since we first saw the concept of bamboo being used for making fabric. When the fibers of bamboo were first extracted these were found to be soft. So it was considered to be a better choice for making fabric than for making paper. Bamboo grows really fast. It is also one of the most easily available materials. But the commercialization of the process did not happen until recently.
Earlier there were difficulties in processing fibers that could stay strong enough to be woven. Then a lot of chemicals were used to treat the fibers. These toxic chemicals were then slowly replaced by few of the manufacturers with safer chemicals.
In the early 1880’s a new trend of blending wool and bamboo to make fabric. But the whole process involved was pretty expensive. This prevented this technique from being established as a method for mass manufacture.
One of the major milestones for bamboo fabric happened in the early 2000’s. For decades people all over have been working on perfecting bamboo textiles and commercialization of the same. The patent that was obtained in 2003 by a team of scientists in China is considered to be a major step in the journey of bamboo textiles.
Why is there so much going on with bamboo?
Bamboo has antibacterial properties. It also absorbs moisture efficiently. If you have come across using bamboo in cloth diaper inserts it is because of these unique properties of bamboo. The same also applies to the other textile choices that use bamboo. Bamboo clothing is hypoallergenic and comes with other perks as well. We have now seen a vast change in the whole process of making bamboo textiles right from the extraction of the pulp to the actual manufacture of the fibers. This is still a growing industry and the scope for future looks pretty bright as the demand has been increasing steadily.