Our capabilities and applications

Discover a world of possibilities with Nonwovenn SNUS and Modern Oral technology.

While the potential of SNUS and Modern Oral Pouches is vast, we have already developed many applications and capabilities that can transform your product design.

Lamination & Carding

  • • Thermoplastic fibres for thermoforming and heat sealing, also for additional strength while minimising binder content.

    • Wicking, Moisture Vapour Transmission by selecting fibres of different shape factors and constructions to maximise porosity and pore structure.

    • Fabric softness can be controlled to improve both the tactile feel of material and the consumer experience through a ‘smoother in-use sensation’. This is achieved by incorporating a polishing step in conjunction with softer fibres.

    • Biodegradable technology
    (viscose/PLA/PVOH/PBS/bamboo, binders, and natural bast fibres (including hemp, ramie, jute, flax, kenaf & nettle).

    • Wetting and de-wetting control through fibre shape factors. (The addition of superabsorbent fibres and or chemical wetting agents to control absorption/desorption characteristics).

    • Soluble fibres for example PVOH.

  • • Fibre size for controlled pore size and flow characteristics such as the reduction of fibre denier or by the alteration of the shape factor of the fibre to affect the air/fluid
    permeability of the fabric.

    • Production of a bi-layer or tri-layer structure to improve the mechanical integrity of the fabric and/or to control the permeability of fluids and air. For example, a laminate of a drylaid product with a meltblown material can offer improved mechanical integrity of the meltblown whilst controlling the permeability characteristics of the drylaid structure.

    • Odour control by incorporating organic scavenging components such as activated charcoal.

    • Addition of microencapsulated components to incorporate flavours or scents into the fabric construct.

    • Chemical absorption and resistance can be affected by the selection of resistant fibres, binders and by the incorporation of resistant additives into the binder such as triglycerides.

Bonding

  • • Thermoplastic fibres for thermoforming and heat sealing, and to provide additional strength and to minimise binder content.

    • Thermoplastic binders for thermoforming and heat sealing.

    • Binders for chemical reactions, e.g. cross-linking to impart chemical resistance and mechanical integrity.

    • Biodegradable binder technologies are available.

    • Influence on handle (hard or soft), not only by the selection of fibre type and shape factor but also by the selection of the chemistry of the binder used.

    • Influence on handle (hard or soft) by controlling the level of thermal bonding density and bond pattern.

    • Soluble binders enabling dispersing / flushing.

    • Needle punch technology offers the advantages of permeability and durability improvements by the management of the fabrics complex 3D structure to alter the fabric density and anisotropy.

  • • Thermal bonding patterns to impart structural weaknesses.

    • Softening of the fabric by the use of additives such as sulphosuccinates incorporated into our binders or softening by mechanical attrition or calendaring of the fabric.

    • Addition of scents or flavours by the incorporation of these ingredients into our binder.

    • Odour removal by the incorporation of zeolites and/or activated charcoal.

    • Pigments can be incorporated into our binder to offer pre-selected colour shades.

    • Flame retardant active agents can be incorporated into our binder such as alkyl phosphates.

    • Improved weather resistance through the addition of UV absorbers/HALS/ oleophobic agents.

    • Ion Exchange capability by coating of reactive elements onto the fabric.

Dye House & Treatment Centre

  • • Reactions at fibre or binder sites (or both) to impart specific function via grafting to enable permanent hydrophilic or hydrophobic properties or to obtain selective chemical species exchange capability.

    • Sensing agents, for example to monitor temperature, can be added to the nonwoven structure.

  • • Oleophobic treatments for wetting control.

    • Fabric flame retardant treatments.

    • Colouration.

    • Coating of activated Carbon for selective removal of organic species, control of odour or to alter the conductivity of the fabric.

Printing & Coating

  • • Flame retardant agents can be coated on to the fabric of choice.

    • Thermoplastic polymers for adhesion/ thermoforming.

    • The application of microencapsulation technology to impart specific properties such as fabric softening or scent/flavor addition.

    • The coating of odour control and removal of selected species technology such as activated charcoal.

  • • Scent and flavours can be coated on to the fabric.

    • Printed patterns to impart a visual change to the surface to regulate the fluid flow across and through the fabric structure.

    • Branding.

    • Tailor made embossed patterns.

  • Biodegradable Fabric

    • We have developed a unique material constructed entirely from renewable biomass sources, such as vegetable fats and oil, cornstarch and other starches, and cellulosic materials.The material is made using food and medically approved fibres, and, if required, binders to ensure the fabric maintains sufficient mechanical integrity for the many applications in the packaging, medical and industrial markets.These materials can be designated as biodegradable as they decompose into their organic constituents under controlled environmental conditions.
  • ‘Chewable’ Fabric

    We have developed a unique material that allows additives to be assimilated into its configuration and released when chewed. Additives include flavours, nicotine, caffeine, and pain relief chemicals. The material is designed to release additives in a controlled manner via the ‘chewing process’ without a major deterioration to the structure of the fabric.

    Constructed with or without binders, the material is made using food and medically approved fibres bound in a variety of ways that ensure a conformable and agreeable mouth sensation. These methods include needling, stitching, fibre entanglement, or the incorporation of fusible fibres. The product can be cut and packed into any shape or size using standard packaging techniques commonly available to the packaging industry.

    We have also created a resilient, chewable nonwoven fabric capable of withstanding chewing or sucking in the mouth without disintegrating.  When this specially constructed nonwoven fabric is used to form a pouch, it stops the contents of the pouch – such as nicotine containing media, pharmaceuticals, coffee, tea or other flavoured contents – from escaping into the user’s mouth.

    This resilient fabric can be made by laminating together a traditional nonwoven substrate of fabric with a strong, chewable, permeable layer of material made for example with thermoplastic polyurethane (TPU).

    Chewing this specially constructed nonwoven fabric can in fact increase its liquid permeability, thereby controlling the release of substances from within the pouch and improving the transfer of flavours into the user’s mouth. The durability of the fabric in the mouth lasts at least 10 minutes or more which is the normal consumption time for a pouched product.

  • Improving the Chemical Resistance of fabrics

    • We manufacture non-woven products based on various compositions of fibres and binders to produce products of suitable integrity. These products can be made using food and medically-approved fibres and binders that can be further consolidated by various means, including needling, stitching, fibre entanglement, or the incorporation of fusible fibres.In certain applications, the fabric is exposed to chemical attack from additives, such as softening agents, flavours and humectants. This can result in a deterioration of mechanical integrity. However, we have produced a material that resists these chemicals by incorporating specific additives into the non-woven matrix. The product can be cut and packed into any shape or size using standard packaging techniques commonly available to the packaging industry.
  • Controlled Flavour Release

    • At Nonwovenn, our researchers have also created a unique nonwoven fabric specially configured to control the rate at which active ingredients, be they a pharmaceutial product or a flavour, are released from pouches made from the nonwoven fabric.

      Nonwoven fabrics have traditionally been used to make pouches containing individual portions of flavoured products, such as nicotine containing media, coffee, tea, etc., from which flavour is to be extracted. The liquid permeability of nonwoven fabric makes it ideal as a pouch material as it allows the flavours to diffuse and permeate out into the user’s mouth.

      Our scientists at Nonwovenn have created a specially configured fabric that can actually restrict, rather then promote, the diffusion of for example an active medicinal ingredient or the flow of flavours out from the pouch. While counter-intuitive to traditional oral pouch users that normally require immediate flavour release, restricting the diffusion and flow of an active ingredient or flavour can be extremely useful in a whole host of applications. These include the oral delivery of drugs doses, medication, nicotine or other phamaceuticals where a gradual release of the product may be required, rather than an ‘instant hit’.

      This special flow rate-controlling fabric can be constructed by combining a material that acts as diffusion-resticting barrier with a traditional nonwoven fabric substrate. The resulting fabric thus naturally restricts the diffusion or liquid flow through it. When used to form a pouch, the resulting nonwoven fabric thus initially inhibits the diffusion of the pouch contents into the user’s mouth. By varying the robustness of the ‘barrier’ that restricts the flow-rate of the active ingredient, a user can enjoy more or less flavour – or absorb more or less pharmaceutial product – as they wish. If the user requires more flavour or medicine, they can even remove the flow-rate restriction by chewing, thereby permitting faster release of the pouch contents.

      The flow-rate ‘barrier’ can be made from different materials. For example a superabsorbent polymer can be used within the nonwoven fabric, which swells up on contact with water to create a physical barrier to flow-rate. The barrier can even be made with a digestible material such as starch. Alternatively, the flow-restricting material may comprise a layer of semi-permeable thermoplastic polyurethane laminated on the nonwoven fabric substrate. The flow-restricting material can even be woven into the fibres of a nonwoven fabric substrate.

  • Improving fluid transport by the selection of fibres and finishing agents.

    • Nonwoven’s scientists and researchers have discovered that the careful selection of fibres and binders can significantly influence the fluid transport mechanisms of novel, high-tech nonwoven fabrics.

      Quick and uniform release of the flavours and nicotine are a key consideration in the packaging of ‘Snus’ and non-tobacco products. Fibre selection has a special importance when designing nonwoven materials that are used for such products.

      Nonwovenn’s processes ensure their fabrics are characterised by flexibility in producing optimised homogeneity of attributes using a two-layered, parallel single carding manufacturing route.  This construct ensures a high degree of control of the attributes not only in maintaining a high level of strength and stability, but also offering the additional control of the engineering aspects of the fabric requirements.  Fibre selection enhances these attributes and influences fluid transport and management of the constructed nonwoven fabric.

      Nonwovenn is highly skilled in incorporating fibres of differing shapes into its fabrics.  We predominantly use cellulosic fibres such as Viscose and Lyocell that are bonded by the incorporation of a binder to enable the required level of mechanical integrity.  But our researchers have  found that by the careful selection of the degrees of the fibre fibrillation available, or by the use of fibres that have surface channels or grooves that  increase the fibre surface area, the nonwoven fabric’s  transportation properties are greatly improved.

      These carefully selected cellulosic fibres with ‘multi-lobal’ surface channels or grooves can alter and improve the diffusion-based fluid transport characteristics along the fibre as well as via the classically observed capillary flow through the fabric cross section. This offers considerable advantages when used as a material for Snus and nicotine delivery pouches.

      Our scientists have also found that selecting particular fibre finishes improves the characteristics and physical behaviour of the fibre when challenged to the carding process.  These finishes can greatly affect the fabric qualities.

      Nonwovenn’s research shows that rendering the fibre more hydrophilic by using, for example, a carboxylic acid-based derivative can be advantageous in transporting flavours and other fluids found in the media packaged.  We have found that the finish can also increase the fabric’s resistance to flavours and humectants with the addition of triglycerides.

      Our nonwoven materials can also be created using fibres that are either in a ‘dull’ or ‘bright’ format which can alter the fabrics’ optical qualities. Nonwovenn has shown that removing fibres that contain titanium dioxide (TiO2) from its processes result in a far brighter and potentially more appealing fabric to consumers, as well as being more sustainable.

      As fabric engineers, Nonwovenn can design a pouching material that can meet the demands of this exacting market by the careful selection of all materials used.

  • Our “lozenge” product

    • Our researchers at Nonwovenn have created a chewable product that can be shaped into the shape of a lozenge, tablet, pill or pastille. It can even resemble a miniature pillow. The lozenge can be used by the consumer for the oral delivery of many substances, including smokeless tobacco, nicotine salts, CBD, coffee, tea or other flavourings. It can also be used to ingest pharmaceuticals and medication like aspirin, paracetamol and ibuprofen.  Our lozenge is made of nonwoven fabric and provides a frame for embedding within it flavoured contents. When the user chews the lozenge, the flavours or medication held within are gently released. Crucially, however, our specially formulated nonwoven fabric means that the lozenge is strong enough not to disintegrate when chewed, bitten or sucked.

      Unlike traditional pouch-type products that are usually used to deliver flavoured contents, our lozenge can be made from a single piece of nonwoven. This avoids the need for conventional pouching processes, which in turn means that the fabric does not need not have certain properties, such as air permeability and heat sealability. In addition, it means our scientists can be more flexible and inventive over the type of fibre we use to make our lozenge. For example we can use a mixture of staple fibres of viscose, thermoplastic fibres or lyocell. By specially adapting the fibres we use in our lozenge fabric, we can achieve the perfect balance between a strong fabric but one that also offers the consumer a pleasant, soft mouthfeel as well.

  • Lyocell: a staple fibre suited to the future of modern oral products

    • Lyocell is a form of regenerated cellulose which can be obtained by direct dissolution of wood pulp.

      Lyocell fibres typically have a higher degree of cellulose crystallinity compared with viscose fibres. This gives Lyocell fibres a fibrillar structure that can greatly influence fluid transport and flavour transfer across the constructed nonwoven fabric.

      Nonwovenn’s research and development experts have discovered that this property can be used to provide a nonwoven fabric with improved stability for use with substances contained in modern oral products. For example, the nonwoven fabric can exhibit a reduced absorbency of the types of micro-sized materials that are used instead of tobacco-based substances in modern oral products. Lyocell-based fabric remains capable of withstanding manipulation in a user’s mouth when sucked or chewed, while retaining a desirable mouthfeel experience for the user.

      Pouches made from Lyocell fabric are used to package and deliver smokeless tobacco flavouring and are particular suited to modern oral products containing tobacco-free nicotine, pharmaceuticals, coffee and tea etc.

      Lyocell is also one example of a staple fibre that can be manufactured in a sustainable manner, through the use of non-toxic solvents and water used for dissolution which are then fully recycled. Our team is able to create fully compostable, biodegradable nonwoven fabric for oral pouch products by carefully combining biodegradable staple fibres, such as Lyocell, with biodegradable binders. The resulting nonwoven fabric is fully compostable and manufacturable in a sustainable manner, and yet does not compromise on wet strength.

  • Paper-Like Qualities

    • Our scientists at Nonwovenn have developed a unique material that enables it to achieve ‘paper like’ qualities. This has been imparted by the clever use of unique processing and bonding of the drylaid fibres to control the finishing effects in order to produce a smooth, tightly bonded product. The attributes of this unique material have been carefully controlled in order to offer a smooth surface with reduce permeability which can be used to encapsulate the fine products of a nicotine delivery pouch without deteriorating the excellent transfer of nicotine and flavours. Careful selection of fibres and process can ‘dial in’ required additional benefits such as conformability and permeability as well as ensuring it meets current regulatory demands.