Maqui biotextile is a bacterial leather derived from the native forests of southern Chile.
Maqui Biotextile seeks to be the first country-wide experience in biomaterial production from bacterial cellulose (cellulose nanofibers) for textile application, from local microbiota derived from native forests from southern Chile. The Aristotelia chilensis (Maqui tree) is native to this region and it is also extremely abundant because it’s a pioneer species, it’s the first to colonize degraded soils, setting the perfect conditions for other native plants to grow. Creating a material derived from this tree microbiota is both a discovery and also valorization of all the scales involved in its creation. This native biomaterial is a biofabricated material under a fermentation process in which bacteria and yeasts present in Aristotelia chilensis leaves and fruits create a simbiosis. This generates a 100% biobased, low environmental impact material with unique attributes: high mechanical resistance and flexibility, texture and appearance similar to leather from a non-animal and non-petrochemical source, building a value proposition around sustainable material solutions. Maqui biotextile materializes the collaboration in its ecosystem by colonizing and feeding others beings, the collaboration between communities through openly sharing their ancestral knowledge of its conscious and sustainable collection, and the collaboration of its symbiotic microbiota, since its the bacteria and yeast present in its leaves and fruits that do this microscopic weaving. Each scale works in tight collaboration setting an example of how materials should promote values in order to change our Material Culture
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