Traditionally, sisal has been the leading material for agricultural twine because of its strength, durability, ability to stretch, affinity for certain dyestuffs, and resistance to deterioration in saltwater. Today, sisal can be found in speciality paper, filters, geotextiles, mattresses, carpets, wall coverings and dartboards.

Sisal fibre is obtained from Agave sisalana, a native of Mexico. The hardy plant grows well in a variety of hot climates, including dry areas unsuitable for other crops.