AZO dyes are synthetic dyes which may be used in a variety of consumer goods including leather, pharmaceuticals and textiles. They dye the fibre or material directly and eliminate the requirement for a dye fixative.
However, a small proportion of AZO dyes contain substances that are suspected carcinogens. The potentially carcinogenic substances can be metabolised by liver cells and skin surface bacteria if absorbed, for example, as a result of perspiring against the garment.
The EU has regulated the use of AZO dyes in textiles and food. However, regulations elsewhere are currently largely non-existent.
In Australia, AZO dyes are banned from manufacturing however currently there are no import restrictions on products containing AZO dyes.
AZO free dyes do not contain any of the known carcinogenic compounds that have been regulated by the EU.
AZO free dyes are eco-friendly and eliminate the use of toxic compounds in dyeing.
All ORA yarns, with the exception of Banana Silk, use AZO free dyes.
Banana Silk yarn is dyed using a reactive dye.
Reactive dyes react directly with the fibre and form a permanent attachment that cannot be removed by normal conditions. Consequently, the dyes become parts of the fibre. Reactive dyes are eco-friendly.
Not all dyes are equal and it is important that you know what has been used to dye the yarns that you purchase.
Please make sure you know what dyes have been used in the yarns you purchase.