Keracol develops technologies for the extraction and refining of natural products, most notably colourants. They use the active ingredients extracted from residual fruit skins and vegetable peel from the juicing industry and turn them into functional products.
The project has developed and validated the commercial feasibility of an innovative process for dyeing wool yarn using natural colourants, which are active ingredients extracted from residual fruit skins and vegetable peel leftover from the juicing industry.
Through the BFTT project, Keracol have acquired dyeing machinery, enabling in-house dyeing and boosting ongoing R&D capabilities. In tandem with industry dyeing partners, the equipment will be integral to bringing sustainable and novel naturally dyed products to the general market.
Bulmer & Lumb Group are an established dyehouse, based in West Yorkshire, working with a range of materials from raw wool top, top dyed wool, package dyed yarn and synthetic fibres.
Bulmer & Lumb have supported the Keracol R&D project, exploring an innovative process for dyeing wool using natural colourants.
R&D Project Lead
Following almost 30 years of research, experimentation and practical experience Debbie has been awarded Associate of the Society of Dyers and Colourists for her Natural Dye work and is recognised across Europe for her depth of knowledge. She established her brand The Mulberry Dyer in the mid-1990s, received a “Green Achiever” award for her practices and is keen to maintain and encourage bioregional regenerative textile systems. Examples of work can be seen in the V & A Museum, Hampton Court Palace, the Globe Theatre and other prestigious heritage venues. As a consultant to Industry, she has spearheaded research into natural dye application for carpets and high-end knitwear. Currently, a Post Graduate Researcher studying the environmental impacts of natural dyes and mordants including the relation to the fastness of colours.
Prof Richard Blackburn
R&D Academic Mentor
University of Leeds
Richard is a chemist with a passion for textile science; all his research is undertaken in partnership with industry and with a strong sustainability lens. His vision is for a future where alternative materials match the performance of traditional synthetic or unsustainable natural fibres. Richard’s experience includes developing alternative fibres for textiles, from sourcing raw material to processing and finishing. Core skills and competences include:
- Alternative materials development
- Sustainable dyeing and coloration for textiles
- Contract chemistry research
Prof Mohammad Mahbubul Hassan
R&D Academic Mentor
Mohammad Mahbubul Hassan is a material scientist with 24 years of academic and industrial research experience in sustainable textile and polymeric materials development. He completed his PhD in Textile Chemistry in 1999 at the University of Manchester under a British Commonwealth scholarship. Previously, he worked as a senior scientist in the Bioproduct and Fibre Technology Team of the New Zealand Pastoral Agricultural Research Institute for 18 years and as a lecturer at Yamagata University for two years. His expertise is in the following areas:
- Sustainable textiles and biodegradable polymeric materials
- Eco-friendly multi-functional textiles
- Smart, healthcare and cosmetotextiles