In Our Resource Library: FARFARM’s Textiles From Agroforestry

FARFARM is a start-up growing ‘Textile Agroforestry’ in the Brazilian Amazon. The company’s vision is to plant cotton, jute, banana, pineapple, and others in this system that mimics nature, designing species to collaborate with each other, while requiring less water and no chemicals.

FARFARM Co-Founder Beto Bina is already developing the most sustainable and certified fabrics in Brazil, such as organic cotton, recycled cotton, jute, banana, and peace silk. All of them with the commitment to reinvest the profits to expand agroforestry and a fair economic development in the Amazon.

We caught up with Beto to learn more about what the future of fibers looks like for them and how agroforestry can be a big boost in helping save the planet.

You say on your site that you develop fabrics from agroforestry and that agroforestry can regenerate the planet. Tell me more about what that means.

Agroforestry is a management system that mimics nature. It’s a design process where species collaborate with each other, minimizing external inputs like fertilizers and water. Agroforestry sequesters 10 to 20 more tons of carbon per hectare than conventional farming and, once harvested, the soil is getting more fertile, increasing biodiversity and water availability. We are developing what we call ‘Textile Agroforestry’, planting natural fibers using this same system.

What are some of the textiles you currently offer from responsible agroforestry?

We are planting cotton, jute, ramie, banana and other fibers in this system. As of right now, our fabrics coming 100% from agroforestry are still in a prototype phase, but we commercialize the most responsible Brazilian fabrics and reinvest the profits into our agroforestry. We are selling organic cotton, recycled cotton, jute, silk and others.

Tell us more about the prototype farm you are developing.

Our prototype farm is in the state of Pará. We have educated 5 families about Agroforestry, composting and sustainable management. They are taking care of our Agroforestry and benefiting from vegetables, fruits and wood. And we are using the natural fibers and species for natural dyeing. We are expecting to have the first harvest of cotton in the first semester of 2019.

Do you see getting people invested in what you are doing as a holistic experience? (travel, designing, manufacturing?)

We have many ways people can collaborate with us. From buying our available fabrics and supporting our agroforestry, to developing a custom collection with natural fibers, and also visiting our agroforestry and volunteering to get their hands dirty, literally. We will also be visiting mills and artisanal families around the Amazon. It’s such a rich and undiscovered biome, there are lots of opportunities to innovate, and develop truly sustainable products while regenerating the planet. That’s our mission.

Our Sustainable Resource Library provides designers with a comprehensive place to better understand the impacts of the textiles and fibers they use. See, touch and learn more about the applications of FARFARM textiles by booking a consultation now.