In the past, we’ve written about all kinds of natural carpet fibers, including coir, wool, and sisal—and while all of them are eco-friendly and awesome for your Ottawa home, the carpet flooring experts at Floor Coverings International Ottawa East want you to know about all of your options before you make a decision.
Today, we’re going to take a closer look at another member of the natural carpet fiber family: jute. We’ll explain what it is, where it comes from, and why you might choose it for the floors in your home. Let’s get started!
What Is Jute?
From the genus Corchorus, jute is a grass that grows in stalks much taller than your average person. Jute fibers come from the long stems and outer skin of the plant, and once the green plant dries, the resulting material is an exceptionally strong, light tan fiber that can be used for just about anything. In fact, jute can be used to make food, sugar, rope, twine, sacks, bedding, paper, clothes—and of course, carpet!
Jute is also known as “hessian,” “burlap,” and “gunny cloth.” We’re guessing you’ve probably heard of burlap because it’s a fairly common material in the coffee trade, or because you’ve seen trendy pillows made of the material in the homes of your hipster friends.
Where Does It Come From?
Most of the world’s jute is grown in India and Bangladesh, each producing more than a million tons each year. In fact, jute is so important to the economy and culture of Bangladesh that the plant appears on the country’s national emblem and national bank symbol.
Jute is also extremely important to the cultures and economy of Nigeria, Uganda, the Philippines, Cyprus, and many other countries.
Why Use Jute for Carpet Flooring?
While it fell out of popularity with the rise of synthetic fibers in the 20th century, jute has made a comeback in the 21st century—and we think that’s a good thing because of the sustainable growing practices and other environmental benefits of the crop.
For one thing, jute is rain-fed, which means that it doesn’t require intense irrigation. Jute also doesn’t need fertilizer or pesticides, which makes it much more eco-friendly than a crop like cotton.
Jute is also 100% biodegradable and recyclable, and it has an extremely high tensile strength. That means that jute rugs and carpets are strong and can last for years—but when it’s finally time to retire them, you’re not adding another big piece of trash into a landfill. All of these incredible features are probably why jute has earned the affectionate nickname “The Golden Fiber.”
If you want some more help finding the perfect eco-friendly carpet fiber for your home, schedule a free consultation with the pros at Floor Coverings International Ottawa East. Our team proudly serves the greater Ottawa, Orleans area, so contact us today to get started!
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