Lab-grown fur

Amsterdam-based Geneus Biotech has launched Furoid, a cruelty-free and sustainable alternative to animal fur that could revolutionise the fashion industry.

Working with scientists at the University of Amsterdam, the company uses cellular agriculture technology to make its fur molecularly identical to real fur. It’s a similar process to lab-grown meat, pioneered by Maastricht-based Mosa Meat.

Geneus Biotech combines cells with growth factors and biomaterials to grow the natural tissue properties found in animal fur. It then 3D bio-prints the tissue into a biomaterial, with the final product possessing the same qualities as the real deal, including durability and warmth.

The Fur Free Alliance estimates 1kg of mink fur generates almost 150kg of carbon emissions, a climate change impact five times higher than that of wool. 

“Furoid’s intention fits in with the recent attempts by cellular food companies to create foods such as caviar, foie gras and wagyu beef that are completely animal-friendly and can remove the dilemma between taste pleasure and guilt,” a statement from Geneus said. 

The startup is also creating wool using the same technology, and has applied for a patent for its process.

Sustainability mission

Amsterdam-based companies are no strangers to sustainability and coming up with alternatives to planet-harming processes. 

The fashion industry in Amsterdam is leading the charge on sustainability efforts. Some examples include: Wieland Textiles, which makes new fabrics from recycled materials; Dyecoo has invented a water and chemical-free dying process; The Renewal Workshop helps companies launch renewal and resell platforms; and Lena Library encourages shoppers to rent clothing instead.

Read more business news from around Amsterdam.