Perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) have been commonly used as stain and water-repellents in performance textiles for many years. There are PFAS-free alternatives available, but many have proven not to be as effective, particularly for oil-based stains.
In the USA there are currently 31 states with legislative efforts focused on the reduction of PFAS. In the European Union (EU) PFOS has been restricted for more than 10 years, and the national authorities of Denmark, Germany, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden have submitted a proposal to European Chemicals Agency (ECHA), Helsinki/Finland, to restrict PFAS’ under REACH, the EU’s chemicals regulation. Most of these current bills relate to drinking water, food packaging, apparel, and infant and juvenile related items.
The textile manufacturer Nassimi LLC, New York, NY/USA, is already focusing on the advancements in sustainable performance upholstery materials. The majority of products are (and have always been) PFAS-free.
The stain repellent finish that had been used on most of the Resilience TX fabrics of Nassimi is based on conventionally used fluorocarbon chemistry. The company has tested and evaluated PFAS-free alternatives for some time, and has converted all new production of Resilience TX fabrics to be PFAS-Free, with the goal of having converted all inventory by 2024.
All Resilience TX patterns that were introduced in 2022 are already PFAS free.
There are PFAS-free alternatives that offer highly effective stain protection, that are produced using state-of-the-art technology in the finishing process.
As an example, the liquid barrier fabrics Supreen use a silicone-based stain repellent that is applied following a patented fabric-purification process. This allows for the silicone to fully embed itself into the textiles’ fiber to create an invisible layer of stain protection. Good stain resistance can be provided without the use of any harmful chemicals.
»Given our prior experience developing PFAS-free alternatives, I’m confident that our customers and end-users will still find that the performance capabilities of our fabrics exceed expectations.«
Iwan Nassimi, EVP, Nassimi