Viscose is the most used manmade cellulosic fiber.
Smooth, absorbent, strong, and breathable, viscose is commonly used for a wide range of applications, from apparel to hygiene products. It’s the most important manmade cellulosic, having a market share of roughly 80% of all MMCFs and a production volume of around 5.8 million tonnes in 2021. Like other MMCFs, viscose is mostly derived from pulp from wood, but other raw materials in use or under development include bamboo and agricultural by-products, as well as post-consumer and industrial waste.
Wood sourcing for viscose production poses risks.
The sourcing of wood for the production of viscose comes with environmental and social risks, including deforestation and forest exploitation. This has implications for biodiversity and the wellbeing of Indigenous Peoples, whose land, livelihoods, and traditions are bound up with the area. Plus, the chemicals used in the pulp and fiber production can threaten the health and safety of workers as well as the surrounding environment, due to emissions and the discharge of liquid waste. Concerns around forced or child labor and the mistreatment of workers have also been raised.
We want to see a fashion and textile industry that’s forest-friendly.
We’re supporting the fashion and textiles industry in switching to fibers and materials that have better environmental and social outcomes than their conventional alternatives. We aim to protect and responsibly manage all forests, eliminate deforestation/support forestry conservation efforts, move away from harmful and hazardous chemicals used during the creation of MMCFs, and shift to renewable energy sources at MMCF production sites, all while considering the livelihoods of wellbeing of workers and surrounding communities.
Fight deforestation and limit waste
Dive deeper into viscose production
Take the next steps in your sourcing journey
Sign up for our MMCF Round Table
Lead the conversation on a future for manmade cellulosics that protects people and ecosystems with other stakeholders along the supply chain.
Complete the MMCF Supplier Transparency Questionnaire
Our MMCF Producer Transparency Questionnaire allows brands to get uniform, reliable, easy-to-read, and comparable information on MMCF fiber suppliers.
Become a CanopyStyle Partner
The CanopyStyle initiative is working with hundreds of companies in the fashion and textile industry to transform supply chains and find fiber alternatives that don’t threaten ancient or endangered forests.
Read the Canopy Hot Button Ranking and Report
Canopy’s Hot Button Ranking and Report is a fiber sourcing analysis tool for the fashion sector that focuses on forests. It ranks producers according to how climate-friendly their sourcing is.
South African diversified wood fiber company Sappi is taking full accountability for the link between fashion and forestry. The company’s dissolving pulp products are used to create viscose fibers for clothing and textiles, as well as pharmaceutical products, packaging, and specialty papers. It sources its wood pulp either from its own sustainably managed forests and plantations, or from accredited suppliers around the world.
Other Manmade Cellulosics
Lyocell and modal are popular manmade cellulosic fibers for fashion. Both lyocell and modal—two of the most common manmade cellulosics—make for soft and versatile fabrics.