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Processing and Cost Advantages

Processing Advantages

For years cotton has been viewed as an expensive and difficult fiber for manufacturing in the nonwovens industry. The processing disadvantages from bleached cotton can be summarized by lack of fiber lubricant, presence of foreign matter, fiber breakage, and dust accumulation. The lack of lubricant in bleached cotton is due to the scouring process, which removes the natural wax and pectin on greige cotton fiber that otherwise allows for excellent carding. The absence of these natural waxes also affects the fiber's ability to release static charge, resulting in static buildup and poor processing characteristics.
Foreign matter in scoured and bleached cotton has been a major concern. The thorough processing of True Cotton lessens the frequency of both manmade and natural foreign materials that occur in cotton, resulting in a staple fiber that is many times cleaner than bleached cotton. Dust is a characteristic of low level initial processing and cleaning in the scouring process. Fiber breakage occurs due to weakening caused by the oxidization of the cotton cellulose during the bleaching process.
All of the aforementioned processing deficiencies combine to result in poor carding quality, slower processing speeds, and a decrease in the quality of the work environment (dust). These issues are perfectly illustrated by the fact that traditional textile yarn manufacturers process greige cotton fibers and perform any bleaching/dyeing in the latter stages of their process.
True Cotton allows nonwovens manufacturers, for the first time, the ability to process natural consumer preferred cotton fibers at line speeds comparable to manmade polymers commonly used and furthermore without any ancillary negative processing characteristics.

True Cotton Nonwovens Carding and Hydroentanglement Speed Trial February 2009, nsc/Thibeaux Pilot Facility in Tourcoing, France


Cost Advantages

In the realm of nonwovens raw materials, scoured and bleached cotton is seen as a fiber with one of the least attractive price points available. The high cost of this raw material is due to the amount of water, chemical, and energy-intensive inputs that are required for scouring and bleaching greige cotton fibers. Because the process to realize True Cotton is a dry mechanical manufacturing operation with relatively low energy requirements, less cost is required for the manufacture of True Cotton. These cost savings are passed on to True Cotton customers, thereby opening the door for the expansion of cotton into nonwovens.
The TJ Beall ownership and management is composed of agricultural producers and marketers that have a depth of knowledge in the cotton futures market and can leverage this understanding with nonwovens customers to achieve stable raw material pricing and proper risk management strategies.

Please contact T J Beall for further information about this unique service