You pay more and more attention to what you eat by favouring local producers, you make efforts to reduce your waste. In short, you have an eco-responsible attitude. And what about fabrics? For your linen or your clothes, what material do you use? Is it cotton or linen? If linen is comfortable, especially in summer, it has other advantages, especially for the planet. Do you know the environmental impact of linen versus cotton?
Focus on linen vs. cotton production
80% of the world's linen production is produced in Europe. The first producer is none other than France, mainly in Normandy and in the Hauts de France. Flax cultivation requires little water and five times less fertilizer than cotton. No pesticides or solvents are needed for flax, unlike cotton. Flax needs a temperate and humid climate to grow. A good balance of sun and water (rain) are ideal conditions for its cultivation. It draws its resources naturally from the soil. Flax is what we call eco-friendly. Why is it so? Because in flax, nothing is lost. The entire plant is used: fiber, seeds, straw, wood and dust. It does not produce any waste. Although flax is mainly used in the textile industry, it is also used in the food sector. Flaxseed is eaten for its high omega-3 content. Oil is also produced from the seeds. Flax is an interesting research axis to insulate houses in an ecological way or to manufacture lighter cars. Who would have thought it! Let's take a closer look at the environmental impact of flax versus cotton.
The environmental impact of linen vs. cotton | The duel
Cotton is currently used much more than linen by the textile industry, but the popularity of the latter is constantly rising. For a question of comfort and quality of the fabric but also because of its environmental impact. Linen is indeed recyclable and biodegradable. Cotton needs a lot of irrigation (between 7000 and 29000 liters of water for 1 kg of cotton) while linen simply needs rainwater. It also uses a large quantity of insecticides and pesticides to fight against the various parasites. Moreover, chlorine is used to bleach cotton, which is not without consequences for the planet and the soil, which is very polluted.
Flax fixes CO2 in the earth thanks to its roots. It is thus a carbon sink (one hectare of flax retains 3.7 tons of CO2 per year on average). Its various manufacturing stages require a small amount of water and energy.
As for your food, you can act and consume in a more responsible way by choosing linen. A timeless, resistant fabric, it will stand the test of time, fashions and trends, thus pushing back the recycling stage. To consume sustainably is also to opt for products that we do not throw away at each change of season.
In the linen vs. cotton match, linen is the winner! Its natural and ecological image is confirmed. At a time when people are being made aware of global warming and the importance of taking care of the planet, linen is a great way to look after our precious Earth. Think about it the next time you shop and look at the labels!