Submitted to: Trade Journal Publication
Publication Type: Trade Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: 7/19/2005
Publication Date: 9/15/2005
Citation: Akin, D.E. 2005. Standards for flax fiber. Standardization News. pp. 22-25. Interpretive Summary: Standards are needed to help support an emerging flax fiber industry in the US. Research has been undertaken through collaboration of several research ARS and university laboratories on test methods for fiber properties of interest to industries. Background and the work to date on developing standards through ASTM subcommittee D 13.17 (Flax and Linen) is given. This manuscript is important to inform producers, scientists, and potential users of work on flax fibers to support a new US industry.
Technical Abstract: Unlike many fibers, flax does not have a uniform set of objective standards to judge quality. The broadening use of flax and the production from diverse sources call for objective standards for efficient processing, application, and marketing potential. The traditional linen industry depends primarily upon long-used organoleptic tests for quality. Interest is strong, however, for uniform and objective tests to measure properties of flax fiber that could be used in myriad applications. Subcommittee D 13.17 has been active since 1999 in developing standards for flax fibers, and to date four standards have been produced. Existing fiber methods have been adapted to flax where appropriate, but new technologies are being used for rapid, non-destructive testing. Subcommittee D 13.17 is currently active and meets regularly during ASTM’s “Textile Committee Week”.