Italian group converts old fishing nets into bags and homewares

Karen Pham

Karen Pham

Risacca / Facebook

Risacca, an Italian sustainable startup, is finding creative ways to recycle old fishing nets.

Fishing activity in the Atlantic Ocean has been increasing since 2018, resulting in a tremendous increase in synthetic fishing nets. The nets are composed of plastic (nylon or HDPE), but they can easily be given a second life if put through recycling processes.

Founded by Carlo Roccafiorita, Cristiano Pesca and Federica Ditta, Risacca is a circular project that recycles fishing nets mostly from Mazara del Vallo, an Italian fishing centre, transforming them into ethical fashion and sustainably designed products. 

Fishing nets, according to the trio, are limitless waste that can be used like fabric or shredded and turned into a range of products used in our daily lives. A tonne of mesh can create 200 seats, 2000 coverings, or 10,000 buttons, for example.

This project aims to protect the environment and make a positive social impact as well as create a variety of career opportunities for locals involved.

“Today, more than ever, we must be resilient, by introducing innovation we can find solutions that can generate jobs and protect the environment,” says Roccafiorita. With Risacca, we have designed a process that will transform fishing nets into resources, generating social impact.” 

To recycle nets on a larger scale and recover as much plastic as possible, Risacca has recently sought funds to construct a laboratory and set up machinery such as an extruder, shredder, sheetpress and 3D printer. 

Italian group converts old fishing nets into bags and homewares
Karen Pham

Karen Pham

Karen Pham is a marketing and branding enthusiast with a major in legal English. Based in Ho Chi Minh City, she is a contributor to Viable.Earth.


  1. Avatar

    Interesting article, good writer.


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