FIFA says that it sees potential in a non-filled system that its Innovation Programme partner has submitted for approval but points out that the system doesn’t meet all the quality requirements it is expecting such system to meet.
Last year, FIFA announced that it had selected Vivaturf as partner for its FIFA Innovation Programme Challenge to develop a synthetic turf system without polymeric infill. Such system should allow football to be played with the same performance levels as the systems and pitches currently certified under the FIFA Quality Programme.
In response, Vivaturf designed a non-filled synthetic turf system composed of curly tufted yarn and a high elastic shockpad. It allows for easier and cost-effective installation and maintenance, has the capacity to maintain its performance level thanks to both a high elastic shockpad and the absence of infill, whilst fully eliminating the issue of infill loss related to the micro plastics debate.
“Despite its potential, the system currently does not meet all the quality requirements set out in the FIFA Quality Programme for Football Turf, such as the requirements for rotational resistance and surface friction and abrasion,” FIFA writes in a project update. “This project aims at gathering sufficient evidence to justify the inclusion of the non-filled system as a sub-type within the Programme, having a dedicated and slightly adjusted test protocol to reflect the specific nature of the product. Results and additional documentation Interim results and further information will follow as the project progresses.”