Before the introduction of synthetic fibers, natural fibers were the main ingredients in the production of fabrics, ropes and paper. Fiber crops are grown for the natural fiber used in manufacturing industries. These crops were known for their high concentration of cellulose, which made them strong. Today they are still growing and scientists are looking for different ways to change the strength of cellulose to produce different fibers for use in the production of various products. Fiber cultures are divided into three groups, textile fibers, cord fibers and filling fibers.
Process of fiber cultures
In the past, the fiber was obtained by recycling old fabrics. Recycling assured them that the card would be available for use. However, wood pulp was introduced into the papermaking process and became the main ingredient for paper production. It has also relied on the recycling of irrelevant old fabrics. Today, fiber is used in production thanks to the advantages it has over wood pulp after considering the impact on the environment and on production costs. The process involves first obtaining the fiber from the plant. The type of fiber will determine the process to be used in the extraction process. Microbes are used in the maceration process to obtain raffia fibers. Bacteria help get rid of soft tissue from the fiber plant. Decortication is used to obtain hard fibers as the machines will remove the product from the plant. The grinding process is also used to obtain soft fibers since the machines involved will remove it from the plant.
Sources of fiber
The different plants are rich sources of fiber. These plants produce raffia fibers, leaf fibers and seed fibers. Horseradish fibers are also known as stem skin fibers and are found in plants such as hemp, papyrus, hoop, kenaf, nettles, among others. The fibers are also found on the leaves of plants such as Abaca, Sisal, Yucca, Phormium and Hemp Bowstring. Seeds and fruits can be sources of fiber; they are coconut (coconut), cotton, alfalfa and loofah. Bamboo is another source rich in fiber. The fibers have different dimensions for diameter and length, measured in millimeters. For example, bamboo has a diameter of 14 millimeters and a length of 2.7 millimeters, which is different from that of cotton, which has a diameter of 25.0 millimeters and a length of 20 millimeters.
Problems in the production of vegetable fibers
While innovation has helped alleviate the difficulties of fiber production, problems are encountered during the storage of fiber crops. It is a challenge because the decomposition of fiber crops destroys them, so it is necessary to prevent it. Crops are usually stored for a long time; sometimes months, so it is essential to protect from elements that could cause rotting such as water. Due to the presence of different types of fibrous crops, storage will depend on the type. For example, the storage of seed fibers will be different from those of leaf fibers. The available season will also determine storage, for example field crops (such as sisal) are usually harvested once a year, unlike tree crops that can be harvested each year.