Engineering Materials

Using ocean waste to make more sustainable furniture

Each year, more than 8 million tons of plastic waste end up in the world’s oceans. Much of the waste culminates in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, which covers an area twice the size of Texas and three times the size of France. Abandoned fishing nets are a growing part of this problem, and the World Wildlife Federation estimates they account for as much as 46% of the waste in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch.

DSM is partnering with our customers and suppliers to help take on this challenge by creating circular supply chains to reduce the problem of ocean plastics waste. When Herman Miller and ITW Dahti were looking for a more sustainable material solution for the industry-leading Aeron chairs, Akulon® RePurposed PA6 was chosen as one of the key materials for the new design.  

“We are committed to helping our customers make their products more sustainable without compromising performance or quality,” said Jud Gibson, Vice President, Marketing & Sales, DSM Engineering Materials. “This is why we’re proud to partner with key customers such as Herman Miller and are on track to offer a bio-based or recycled alternatives for every material we sell by 2030.”  

Akulon RePurposed was developed by DSM to create a sustainable and high-performance alternative to virgin PA6 material. The material is made by collecting used nylon fishing nets that would typically be discarded into the ocean. Using a proprietary process, they are sorted, cleaned, and shredded to create raw material feedstock for PA6, supporting local jobs throughout the collection process. This material is compounded with other raw ingredients and glass fibers to create a portfolio of PA6 material solutions offering comparable performance and quality to new materials.

Today, Akulon RePurposed is widely used by leading manufacturers of automotive parts, consumer goods, and industrial equipment to create world-class products as we work together to take on the challenge of reducing ocean waste.

To learn more, visit

Published on

17 September 2021

Enhancing the comfort and sustainability of workplace and home office furniture with proper material solutions


Thomas Herzog

Account Manager, DSM Engineering Materials

Thomas Herzog is an account manager for the Americas region for DSM Engineering Materials. Prior to joining the commercial team, he began his DSM career working in customer service. He earned his bachelor’s degree in education from Oakland University.

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