What is Polyurethane (PU)?

  • in technical terms, polyurethane (PU) is a polymer. It is prepared using fossil-fuel raw materials, most commonly petrol-based or oil-based. Hence at the early stage of life PU is created with non-renewable and non-biodegradable materials and emits high levels of GHG in its production
  • a polymer is the raw material (resin) that is combined with other ingredients to be shaped into final form PU plastic. There are varying types of PU plastic – flexible or solid – and used in a wide variety of applications to create many consumer and industrial products, including fashion clothing and accessories, building insulation, car parts, and more
  • PU material used as faux or vegan leather is then produced by mixing the PU polymer with 2 chemicals. The chemical reaction of combining the PU polymer with those chemicals delivers the PU plastic which is then attached to a textile backing beit polyester, cotton, nylon or whatever
  • in technical terms, the 2 chemicals used are ‘di-isocyanate (TDI)’ (which is a form of ‘isocyanates’) and ‘polyols’
  • isocyanate chemicals used in the production process are toxic and hazardous to workers. Regulators and organisations around the globe have focussed on the exposure of workers to isocyanate chemicals in manufacturing

What is polyvinyl chloride (PVC)

What is polyvinyl butyral (PVB) and Recycled PVB?