We’re guessing that you’re already somewhat familiar with cotton. And though you might not know it, you’re probably well acquainted with Barnhardt purified cotton®, too. We’ve been around for years, in part because we place a high premium on cotton customization.
From the field to the consumer’s hand, no one understands cotton—and reinvents ways to maximize its potential—like we do. We take great pride in providing custom cotton solutions for our domestic and global partners.
Meeting Our Customers’ Demand
Collaborating with partners to create new products is just one way we changed the course of cotton. For example, new state-of-the-art cleaning equipment was developed to achieve the high degree of cleanliness that our revolutionary High Q® and High Q® Ultra fibers possess.
Due to customer requests, we also altered the way we purified our raw cotton material. In 1994 we developed a breakthrough and environmentally friendly chlorine-free process called TCF (Totally Chlorine-Free) to purify our cotton.
And using organically grown fibers an additional purifying process was developed that allowed for the production of fiber that meets the rigorous demands of Oregon Tilth and the USDA to be certified as a 100% organic product.
Even today we still adhere strictly to customer demand, tailoring the fiber processes and fiber finishes to meet exact specifications. As recently as 2018, we achieved yet another industry-first breakthrough in the purification of cotton with the development and implementation of our EVOC system.
The development of EVOC was itself a reaction to the evolution of the business of cotton, as consumers have swung the pendulum away from artificial fibers, particularly in the area of nonwovens for personal care and hygiene products, especially those for women and babies. When your end-customer is using your products in a variety of next-to-skin applications in the most sensitive places, they demand your very best product.
EVOC delivers an unprecedented achievement in cotton whitening and cleanliness, now the industry standard for medical uses of cotton and hygienic uses like tampons, liners, diapers, and wipes. EVOC is based on two principals of cotton processing: mechanical cleaning and purification. When bales of cotton arrive from the field, they’re literally littered with plant matter (stalks and stems), seeds, bacteria, oils, and waxes, as well as extraneous matter like plastic bags and metals coming in from adjacent roadways and properties. Furthermore, field cotton is a cloudy or dirty white color, rather than the ultra-white look that people expect in undyed clothing and nonwovens.
EVOC’s mechanical process achieves a higher level of cleanliness from plant and extraneous matter, and the still chlorine-free washing process achieves a level of whitening previously thought impossible. While competing mechanical cleaning and sterilization processes remove extraneous matter and bacteria, EVOC goes the extra mile, extracting natural waxes and oils for a truly unique cotton product that’s ready for an unparalleled variety of finishes.
Better Cotton, Based on Research and Metrics
Our Technical Services Laboratory doubles as our research and development center, and houses some state-of-the-art Barnhardt services:
- Pilot Kier: by simulating our production process, our process continually improves.
- Pilot Cards: We’re always willing to simulate process trials on purified cotton for potential customers.
- AFIS Fiber Analyzer: provides metrics such as fiber length and foreign matter so that our customers have valuable data to base decisions on.
In fact, if you’re looking for nonabsorbent cotton, we can provide that as well, which is an important element in products such as top sheets for baby care, feminine care, and adult incontinence products.
Our innovation spans more than 100 years. And for our current and future customers, we plan to remain committed for at least 100 more.
The Proof Is In Our Products & Finishes
While we mentioned a few of our cotton breakthroughs above, if you want to learn more, here’s an extensive list of products, fibers, and finishes that Barnhardt has brought to the cotton table over the years.
- HiLoft® Cotton
- another recent Barnhardt development, this is a cotton fiber with higher loft and resilience.
- High Q® and High Q® Ultra
- these are fibers that were developed for products that required a higher degree of removal of plant material.
- HyDri® Cotton
- one of our newest products, this cotton is processed to a high degree of whiteness and is hydrophobic even after hydroentangling.
- NeedleEze® Fiber
- this is an applied fiber finish that allows for less needle wear and breakage during the production of needle-punched fabrics.
- UltraClean® Cotton
- this is comber or virgin cotton that has been cleaned through our exclusive Barnhardt mechanical cleaning process.