FREITAG produces first circular backpack


Zurich – After two years of development, FREITAG produces a three-layer laminated fabric made of polyamide 6. It is used for the lining, the waterproof membrane and the outer fabric of the new Mono[PA6] backpack, as well as its buckles. It is recyclable as a whole.

FREITAG has started production of the first circular backpack. It is made of a single material, including its buckles, and can therefore be recycled as a whole. The first 1500 units of the mono[PA6] are expected to go on sale in the spring of 2024, along with a take-back process, according to a media release.

Accordingly, FREITAG decided after an intensive material and market analysis that polyamide 6, or PA6 for short, was the most suitable material for this purpose. Because a fabric made of PA6 could not be found on the market, the company developed it together with a Taiwanese textile partner. After two years of testing, we now have a fabric whose inner lining, waterproof membrane and outer fabric are made exclusively of PA6.

“We were never interested in simple carrier bags,” says FREITAG’s Circular Technologist Anna Blattert, “but in functional, durable and, not least, water-repellent FREITAG products made from just one material. We didn’t expect that the reduction of materials would increase the complexity of this project – especially in procurement – to such an extent.”

When FREITAG’s repair service and also the pocket exchange service have been exhausted, PA6 returns to the open-loop material cycle via the company’s take-back service and can be mechanically recycled into reusable raw polyamide 6. That this is feasible was confirmed at KATZ Aarau, Switzerland’s plastics technology platform. ce/mm