NEW YORK (Oct. 4)—Dow Chemical Co. has developed what it claims is a new class of elastic fiber, Dow XLA, for the stretch fibers market, which currently is dominated by rubber- and polyurethane-based products. The company has created a new unit, called Dow Fiber Solutions, within its global polyolefins and elastomers portfolio, to make and supply the product worldwide. Target applications for Dow XLA include garments, where Dow claims the fiber offers "soft-stretch" comfort and ease of care. The textiles industry will see processing efficiencies because of the fiber's heat and chemical resistance, Dow said. The company did not give information about the composition of the fiber material, but said it "is so highly differentiated that the Federal Trade Commission has rendered a preliminary decision to grant Dow a new generic classification." Dow said it expects spinners and mills to value the material's processing efficiencies.