FLAX: increasing the value for society

Project Details


The European funded INTERREG IVA FLAX programme was led by the University of Brighton in the South of England, where Principle Investigator Professor Sergey Mikhalovsky from PABS (School of Physical and Biomedical Science) collaboratds with Dr Joan Farrer and the Design Researchers from SAD (School of Architecture and Design). The research brought together the Research and Development activities of two regional universities in Northern France, Rouen and LeHavre, a research institution and a local manufacturing company, joining thier complementary expertise in producing and processing flax fibre and flax composite materials, extracting natural products with medical and nutritious value, manufacturing, characterisation and testing of fibre-based and composite-based carrier packaging and food packaging and biomedical materials.

Flax and its siblings (linen, jute, and hemp) make up one of the first fibre families used by man, as is evidenced by artefacts found in ancient sites around the globe. Flax is a native to certain latitudes of the earth; it thrives particularly well and sustainably in the UK and Europe, and points east and west of these countries. Flax has been of particular economic importance through the centuries for its versatility in strength, variety of quality, application for buildings, fabrics, materials, medical applications and food. It comes in a range of natural colours, takes dyes well and can be made into a myriad of materials and products. Its environmental credentials are impressive.

The main aim of this project is to increase the production value of flax through exploring its potential use:
• In biomedical applications (such as a biomedical material in wound care)
• As a foodstuff
• As a biodegradable material for packaging, including food packaging
. Product design: furniture, sports equipment
Effective start/end date1/01/1230/06/15


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