Project objectives

NETFIB’s overall aim is to develop the capacity for farmers and other land managers to recover nettle as a fibre crop from marginal land, which would otherwise remain under-used. Within this aim it has four specific objectives, each of which tests a different hypothesis which is linked to a specific work package (WP):

  • Sp Obj1: To test the hypothesis that nettle production under short rotation coppice can reliably produce harvestable nettle biomass to a quality and quantity that is likely to be commercially viable.

  • Sp Obj2: To test the hypothesis that the yield of nettle biomass in agro-forestry systems on marginal land can be enhanced by manipulations of soil and microbes.

  • Sp Obj3: To test the hypothesis that nettle fibre from marginal land sites can effectively substitute existing fibre feedstocks in a range of biocomposites, and create opportunity for new biocomposite products.

  • Sp Obj4: To test the hypothesis that nettle fibre production with short rotation coppice on land being risk managed by phytoremediation has sustainability benefits compared with conventional phyto-management of such land and that the fibre produced has a comparable or better life cycle assessment outcome than existing biofibres like flax from conventional agriculture in the market place.
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