UK company Fibe wins Manufacturing Futures Innovation Challenge

UK company Fibe wins Manufacturing Futures Innovation Challenge

Fashion District has announced Fibe as the winner of its 2024 Manufacturing Futures Innovation Challenge. Fibe is a material science startup developing the world’s first textile fibres out of potato harvest waste. The company is developing the most scale, affordable and sustainable textile fibres with comparable performance to mainstream materials. They will receive £15,000 ($19,212) to advance their innovation and grow their business.

The winner was chosen by a judging panel of industry experts, including Ella Gould, head of sustainability and innovation at Selfridges; Chelsea Franklin, head of advanced concept design at Pangaia; Gillian Lipton, sustainability consultant most recently at Alexander McQueen; Matthew Drinkwater, head of fashion innovation agency at London College of Fashion, UAL; and Adam Mansell, CEO of UKFT.

“I feel so energised and hopeful after seeing such a broad spectrum of pitches solving problems across fashion’s entire value chain. The judges were unanimous in Fibe winning this year’s award. The energy in the room after their pitch was palpable and we look forward to seeing them take their fibre innovation to the next level. Who knew potatoes were so exciting,” Ella Gould, head of sustainability and innovation at Selfridges and Manufacturing Futures judge, said.

Fibe, a startup utilising potato harvest waste to create fibres, has won Fashion District’s 2024 Manufacturing Futures Innovation Challenge, securing £15,000 (~$19,212) to advance their sustainable material science.
Sequinova and Fab Materials were also recognised as runners-up for their innovations in biodegradable sequins and recycling fashion waste.

“I’m really excited about winning the Manufacturing Futures prize. I’ve known many of the start-ups in this programme for a long time and have so much respect for them, which is why winning this prize means so much to us. The funding will be used to expand our business, so we are able to harvest a variety of different crops and create better conditions for farmers around the world. Our mission in the end is to create materials that use far fewer environmental resources than what’s currently available. Thank you so much to the judges and organisers for giving us this great opportunity to grow Fibe,” said Idan Gal-Shohet, co-founder of Fibe.

The runners-up, who will each receive £5,000 ($6,404) for their business, include Sequinova, who are making biodegradable sequins out of cellulose; and Fab Materials, who are converting hard to recycle fashion waste into valuable boards and composites, such as furniture, Fashion District said in a press release.

“Congratulations to Fibe for winning this year’s Manufacturing Futures Innovation Challenge. I am thoroughly impressed by the talent and creativity of all the start-ups who took part in this year’s challenge and am hopeful for the future of the industry. There’s plenty we can do to improve and start-ups like these take us one step closer to achieving tangible change.” Helen Lax, director of Fashion District, said.

Fibre2Fashion News Desk (RR)

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