How Vepa have harvested 100% plant-based seat shells

Vepa, parent company of Nomique, focus on thinking, innovating and acting sustainably. Their new product line celebrates harvesting the world’s first collection of 100% plant-based, biological, biodegradable and recyclable seat shells, in collaboration with circular economy specialists, Plantics.

The carbon negative raw material of Vepa’s new Hemp range is grown, dried, combed and pressed into non-woven fabric mats by Hempflax. Hemp is a waste-free crop which grows without artificial fertiliser or pesticides, requires little water and absorbs CO2. The residual fibres from hemp processing are the strongest natural fibres in the world and, when pressed and combined with Plantics’ patented bio-material resin, create the seat for Vepa’s Hemp chairs.



In their search to create a biofuel from biological waste material, Plantics accidentally developed a sticky mass that turned out to be a unique resin. The CEO of Plantics commented:

“Existing binders are poisonous and non-degradable, so the residues can wander around in the environment for an endless period of time. To prevent damage to the environment, we have developed a 100 percent organic thermosetting resin that binds the hemp fibers together. The resin is made from purely vegetable materials – including residual material from sugar beet – and is recyclable. In the future, we hope to replace all materials with harmful resins with our nature-friendly variant.”

Vepa’s new collection is produced entirely in the Netherlands and includes frameworks made from PEFC certified wood or recyclable steel. The individual components of the chairs are designed in such a way that they can easily be separated and reused. Although biodegradable by nature, what makes these chairs truly unique is the possibility for their seats to be shredded and pressed again, without risking a loss of quality.

Vepa’s Managing Director summarised: “We had been looking for years for a biomaterial in which both the raw material and the binder are biological and recyclable. Only then could we really develop a sustainable product. We are incredibly proud that we have achieved this after two years of research and that we are the first in the world to do so. An innovation that contributes in a very special way to our mission to combat raw material scarcity, climate change and CO2 emissions.”

Interested in specifying Vepa’s Hemp range? Contact Ultimate to find out more.